By Paul Lecker For Zaleski Sports
AUBURNDALE – The Auburndale boys basketball team is off to a hot start and veteran head coach Chad Weinfurter is expecting big things again from the Apaches this season.
Auburndale pulled away to beat Tomahawk 72-53 in its season opener on Nov. 26, and whipped Wisconsin Rapids Assumption 75-37 in its Marawood Conference South Division opener on Dec. 2.
Auburndale has four returning letterwinners, three of which have scored in double figures in both of the Apaches’ wins.
Cooper Weinfurter had 27 and 11 points, Hunter Wright had 18 and 13, and Fletcher Raab scored 13 and 16 points for Auburndale in the first two games.
Dylan Paun is the other returnee for the Apaches, who finished 19-6 overall and 12-4 in the Marawood South last season.
Cody Trowbridge, Paul Kollross, Kaden Hoffman, Jason Wilcox, Schuyler Gilhausen and Carl Lundgren have all seen action already this year as well.
“We have high expectations every year and this year is no different,” said Chad Weinfurter, who is 211-64 in his 12 years as head coach for Auburndale. “We want to compete for the top of our conference and make a deep run in the playoffs. We lack size but have excellent chemistry and work extremely hard.”
Weinfurter said Stratford is the clear favorite to repeat as conference champions as the Tigers return a number of key players from a team that went undefeated in Marawood South play last year. After that, it’s up for grabs, he said.
“We hope to be near the top,” Weinfurter said. “We need to play tough perimeter defense and rebound the best we can. We have some good shooters and we will need to shoot well to beat the best teams.”
Auburndale Boys Basketball Schedule Tue., Nov. 26 at Tomahawk, W, 72-53 Tue., Dec. 3 WIS. RAPIDS ASSUMPTION, W, 75-37 Fri., Dec. 6 ABBOTSFORD, 5:45 p.m. Mon., Dec. 9 at Marshfield Columbus Catholic, 7:15 p.m. Fri., Dec. 13 MARATHON, 7:15 p.m. Tue., Dec. 17 at Edgar, 7:15 p.m. Fri., Dec. 20 at Phillips, 5:45 p.m. Fri., Dec. 27 AUGUSTA, 7:30 p.m. Sat., Dec. 28 NEILLSVILLE or WEYAUWEGA-FREMONT, 7:30 p.m. Fri., Jan. 3 at Stratford, 7:15 p.m. Fri., Jan. 10 CHEQUAMEGON, 7:15 p.m. Tue., Jan. 14 WAUSAU NEWMAN CATHOLIC, 7:15 p.m. Fri., Jan. 17 at Wis. Rapids Assumption, 7:15 p.m. Tue., Jan. 21 SPENCER, 7:15 p.m. Thur., Jan. 23 at Rib Lake, 7:15 p.m. Tue., Jan. 28 at Marathon, 7:15 p.m. Tue., Feb. 4 EDGAR, 7:15 p.m. Fri., Feb. 7 PRENTICE, 7:15 p.m. Thur., Feb. 13 at Athens, 7:15 p.m. Mon., Feb. 17 WITTENBERG-BIRNAMWOOD, 7:15 p.m. Fri., Feb. 21 STRATFORD, 7:15 p.m. Thur., Feb. 27 at Wausau Newman Catholic, 7:15 p.m. Tue., March 3 WIAA Div. 4 regional quarterfinal, 7 p.m. Home games in CAPS, at Auburndale High School
Paul Lecker is publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com, a contributor to Zaleski Sports.