Area Male Athlete: W-DC's Ross burning up the nets

January has been a productive month for Noah Ross. The junior guard for the Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverines boys basketball team has netted two 30-point games in helping W-DC to a 3-2 mark this month. While reaching 30 points in a high school game i...

Noah Ross
Noah Ross

January has been a productive month for Noah Ross.

The junior guard for the Wadena-Deer Creek Wolverines boys basketball team has netted two 30-point games in helping W-DC to a 3-2 mark this month.

While reaching 30 points in a high school game isn't the norm, neither Ross or W-DC head coach Kevin Tumberg are that surprised.

"I wouldn't say it has surprised me," Tumberg said. "I'm not going to say I expected 30-point games out of him, but I'm not surprised he's doing this. I am surprised with how often he's doing it. He's proven to be consistent with it."

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Noah Ross

  • Year: Junior
  • School: Wadena-Deer Creek
  • Sport: Basketball
  • Position: Guard
  • Highlights: Scored 30 points in win over Menahga

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Ross opened the season with a 77-60 victory over Long Prairie-Grey Eagle, with his first 30-point outburst.

"Sometimes it's just like after the game you sit and think about the game and it's like, 'Geez, I really did shoot good,'" Ross said. "Sometimes you wonder if you missed any, but it's just kind of weird. The games where I feel like I'm coming in shooting cold, those are the ones where I start to heat up."

It's fitting Ross would be feeling cold in the miserable month of January and then turning up the heat on the court. He drained 30 points to lift the Wolverines to an 80-78 overtime victory over Park Region Conference foe Menahga Jan. 12. One night later, Ross hit 13 points in W-DC's 62-60 conference loss to Sebeka.

He posted 15 points in a 93-51 defeat of Warroad Jan. 7 and tallied 22 points in a loss to Pillager Jan. 5. He reached his first 30-point output in a 59-55 win over Royalton Jan. 3.

"I think overall, his shooting obviously has improved quite a bit, but his ball handling as well," Tumberg said. "He's taking care of the ball and he's handling it better than he has in years past.

"He's one of those kids that has a very, very high IQ of the game. You get that a lot from playing throughout the summer and the fall, but he's just one of those guys that's always in the gym, always trying to get better. Just having a ball in your hands is one of those things that every kid should look up to and that's the easiest way to get better."


Through 12 games, Ross is averaging 19.8 points per game, while hitting 47 percent (80-of-171) of his field goal attempts. He's shooting 31-70 from 3-point (44 percent). But he's also averaging 5.9 rebounds, 3.1 assists and 1.9 steals per game.

"He's one of those guys that really does everything for us," said Tumberg. "He can create off the drive. At times, he was just taking over the game. The last time he hit 30, he would bring the ball up the court and pull up and shoot a 3 or he would blow by his guy and finish at the rim.

"The nice thing about him, too, is he's had some 30-point games, but he's very willing to dish it, too. He's averaging almost four or five assists per game."

Ross said he focused his offseason on becoming better with the basketball and beating his opponent off the dribble. He spent much of his time during scrimmages penetrating to the basket instead of shooting 3-pointers. Having a multi-dimensional offensive attack has helped, he said.

But as a team captain and leader, doing all the other things has helped his team the most.

"I was just trying to help them be better than last year," said the three-sport athlete. "I really wanted to help the younger players because we graduated seven seniors and it was me and one other person that had any varsity experience so I just wanted to help those guys get some wins and gain some confidence.

"Doing all the little things on the court is very important. If you're showing your teammates that you're willing to get on the floor, that makes them want to do it. You don't want to be someone who is timid because if you're supposed to be a leader of the team and that's how they view you, then that's how they'll play. So I just try and set a good example."



Other notable performances:

Basketball: Matt Tautges, Pierz, scored 31 points against Paynesville.

Gavin Smith, Staples-Motley, scored 24 points against Park Rapids.

Gage Westlund, Pequot Lakes, scored 24 points against Hinckley-Finlayson.

Michael Hanowski, Little Falls, finished with 23 points and eight rebounds against St. Cloud Cathedral.

Jack Silgen, Crosby-Ironton, scored 26 points against Detroit Lakes.

Hockey: Max Phillips, Wadena-Deer Creek, scored six goals against Morris-Benson.

Jake Dykhoff, Wadena-Deer Creek, scored three goals against Kittson Central


Wrestling: Tucker Cain, Pequot Lakes/Pine River-Backus, finished 3-0 with three pins to earn the pin award at the Osakis Duals.

Addisoune Harrington, Pequot Lakes/Pine River-Backus, finished 4-0 with four pins at the Moorhead Duals.

Spencer Miller and Owen Bjerga, Staples-Motley, each won individual titles at the BH-V/PP tournament.

Covering the Brainerd lakes area sports scene for the past 23 years.
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