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June 1, 2020

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3 Pirate boys make All-NWC cage squad

Luke Denecker, Mason Soper, 1st team: Jared Piercefield, 2nd team

By Cort Reynolds
DELPHOS  - Two Bluffton boys received first team All-Northwest Conference basketball honors from league coaches in voting conducted at their annual selection meeting Monday night.

Senior Luke Denecker and classmate Mason Soper were each voted first team All-NWC.

Denecker became just the second Pirate male to surpass 1,000 points in his career this year before a knee injury ended his season.

Pirate senior Jared Piercefield was also named second team all-league.

The Pirates finished the regular season 18-4 overall and tied for second in the NWC at 6-2. 

Columbus Grove junior Blake Reynolds was chosen as the 2019-20 NWC Player of the Year by the league coaches at their meeting.  

He received 119 total points out of a possible 120 in the voting as a nearly unanimous selection. Reynolds averaged 16.8 points per game, along with nine rebounds and five assists for Grove. 
Joining Reynolds, Denecker and Soper on the NWC first team were Kalen Etzler (C'view), Tayt Birnesser (CG) and Brandon Hull (Ada).  

Reynolds, Etzler, Birnesser and Hull are juniors, while Denecker and Soper are seniors. Reynolds and Denecker are three-time first team selections, with Etzler and Birnesser being two-time selections. It is Soper's first time on the all-league first team.

Creed Jessee (L'view), Ian Wannemacher (DJ), Piercefield (Bl), Collin Overholt (L'view) and Josh Henline (S'ville) were voted second team all-league.

Chris Sautter of unbeaten league champion Columbus Grove was voted NWC Coach of the Year.

Bluffton and Lincolnview finished in a second-place tie in the nine-team NWC race with a 6-2 record. Delphos Jefferson and Crestview tied for fourth at 4-4. Ada and Spencerville tied for sixth at 3-5, followed by Paulding (2-6) and Allen East (0-8).