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Lake Country Lutheran boys basketball has had a winning formula to their success. The program has prided itself on player development en route to four consecutive 19-win seasons. 

“I am definitely a believer that coaches win because their players are good,” Lake Country Lutheran boys basketball head coach Mark Newman said. “We definitely have good players and we have worked hard to develop them.”

One of those examples of player development within the program is Luke Haertle, who will walk on at Wisconsin next season. Going into postseason play, Haertle is averaging 22 points per game after averaging 24 points per game a season ago. 

“That is the thing that takes a good team and makes them really good is when you have a good team plus a guy that is willing to go get you baskets when you need to,” Newman said of having Haertle on the team. “Luke has been a good player for us for a long time.”

In addition to Haertle, the Lightning have three other players that average around double figures. Senior Noah Howard averages 16 points per game, while senior John Nehls averages 13 and Ben Luebbers averages around 10 points per game.

“At the end of the day, you have to have really good players to win games,” Newman said of his depth. “We got four guys that can score and we are kind of all clicking because they are all getting involved in their own way.”

Lake Country Lutheran season recap

Lake Country Lutheran finished the regular season with a perfect 15-0 record in the Midwest Classic and an overall record of 22-2. The team has been frequently ranked this season in the Wissports.net poll and also have had competitive games in non-conference action including their only two losses to Pewaukee and Catholic Memorial and a win against Waukesha South this year. 

“I think the guys have done a really good job at keeping their focus,” Newman said. “We always talk about the idea of competing against our best self instead of against an opponent. There are still areas for improvement, but it has definitely been fun working with the guys this year.”

Lake Country Lutheran will have a number three seed in the WIAA playoffs that will start this week. The Lighting will face the winner of the Racine Lutheran vs. Big Foot matchup on March 4.


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