Dec. 6—The Edgeley/Kulm-Montpelier boy's basketball team fell by six points in the class B state championship game last year. The first game on the Rebels schedule in an attempt to avenge that loss is their first game on Dec. 6. The mission since the loss to Kindred in the state championship game is to get back to the mountain top.
Last season, the Rebels started the season 18-1 before finishing the season winning the region championship before a loss saw them come up short in the state championship game and finish the year at 23-4.
Despite the team losing four seniors from last year's team, Rebels head coach Kevin Strobel said that his team has the necessary pieces to continue to compete.
"We will be young but on the other hand, we will have two of those kids back that started last year, Dalton Madcke and Adam Nitschke, that are two seniors that we will lean on heavily for some leadership. I think they will do a fine job and the other kids will just fall in line, I'm hoping so," Strobel said. "The young kids have played quite a bit of basketball too. They just haven't played at the varsity level. I'm hoping those two seniors with all the experience they have will help get us off to a nice start and lead us through this season once it gets rolling."
One of their seniors that graduated was a member of the Class B all-state first team for the 2020-21 season, Alex Huber.
"Anytime you take somebody like Alex off your team, you obviously gotta look for other people to fill some of that. I know we don't have one person that is going to replace everything he brought for us, not only his scoring and his rebounding but just his leadership, just a very strong leader," Strobel said. "Everybody looked up to Alex and when he spoke I know they all listened, everybody just followed in line. That part of it might be tougher to replace than just the points and the rebounds."
The summer workouts have been really helpful for Strobel as he attempts to put together his team heading into the season.
"The summer workouts have been really helpful in what our underclassmen could do and what they might be capable of adding and helping with. Jacob Nitschke will probably be leaned on to fill a lot of minutes," Strobel said. "He's about a 6'4" post player, plays a little bit inside-outside, certainly his size will be an advantage or a help for us that we are looking for."
The district is going to be a tough one for the Rebels to navigate with top players returning on every team that they have to play, Strobel said.
"Ellendale and LaMoure have a lot back from last year. I think LaMoure brings back almost their entire team, other than maybe a couple of kids, their main core is back. Ellendale's got Scott Wagner back, as a second team all-stater and he's definitely a force and they have a lot of young kids that are coming up too that will fit in with them and will play well," Strobel said. "Those two and I think our whole region is gonna be fairly balanced, everybody has some good kids back, it's just a matter of how their young kids are going to step up and respond."