Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL


March 13, 2014

Altamont's Ziegler named NTC MVP

EFFINGHAM — One day after the season's of the final two area boys basketball teams ended, the National Trail Conference announced its All-NTC teams and named Altamont's Garrett Ziegler its most valuable player.

The senior leader of the NTC Tournament champion Indians, who shared the regular season crown with Dieterich and St. Anthony, added another honor to his accomplishments this season.

Ziegler earned most valuable player honors at the St. Elmo and NTC tournaments this season, leading the Indians to the championship of both. He was also named to the All-Tounament team at the Vandalia Tournament.

The 6-foot guard led the Indians in scoring in 19 of 28 games this season and led the Indians to back-to-back 20-win seasons. He was the first Indians player since the 1940s to be a starter on back-to-back NTC regular season championship squads, according to head coach John Niebrugge.

“Garrett kind of ran our team,” Niebrugge said. “He learned how to get open after a rebound and got us into a lot of easy buckets, which created points for a lot of players.”

The Indians finished 24-4 this season, losing in the Class 1A Nokomis Regional against St. Anthony. Ziegler scored more than 1,000 points in his career and led the team in scoring 16.2 points per game this season. He averaged 4.2 assists and 2.9 steals per game this season, finishing the season with 81 steals.

“He was our initial pressure,” Niebrugge said. “It's not always him getting the steal, but he probably caused more than 81. He's very good anticipating. That's when you see him going down the court by himself because he was where the pass was going — he anticipated it.”

St. Anthony led the conference with three players landing on either the first or second teams. John Goeckner earned All-NTC first team honors, while teammates Alex Hoelscher and Neil Williams were voted to the second team.

Dieterich's Tanner Traub, who scored 18 points in the Maroons super-sectional loss on Tuesday, earned an All-NTC first team nod, while St. Elmo/Brownstown's Levi Maxey, Stew-Stras' Brandon Helmuth and Neoga's Jake Baker rounded out the first team.

Altamont's Derek Jahraus was voted to the All-NTC second team. Jahraus averaged 9.4 points per game this season and a team-high 6.9 rebounds per game.

Beecher City's Brady Barnes, Windsor's Alex Allen and Dieterich's Alex Bohnhoff rounded out the second team, along with Hoelscher and Williams.

Four NTC players earned honorable mentions. Cowden-Herrick's Colton Burrus, Neoga's Wyatt Krikie, SE/B's Jacob Behrends and Windsor's Tristan Warner received the recognition.

Alex McNamee can be reached at 217-347-7151, ext. 123, or alex.mcnamee@effinghamdailynews.com.


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