Lincoln East boys basketball: season in review


Photo by Luke Borgmann

Spartan senior forward Wes Dreamer dunks in the district semifinals against Omaha Burke on February 25 at Lincoln East. East won 63-54.

The Lincoln East boys basketball team began the season with completely new faces and little varsity experience. Following last year’s buzzer-beater loss to Omaha Bryan in the first round of state, the Spartans had to look forward to next season. After losing a strong senior class, including forward Sam Griesel and center Jordan Janssen, senior transfer Wes Dreamer and three-year varsity returner Connor Riekenberg provided the spark for the Spartans. “There weren’t a lot of expectations going into the year after we lost a lot of seniors,” said Riekenberg. “We weren’t really sure what to expect.” Yet the Spartans started off hot and went 6-0 to begin the season. They put up big wins over state bound Kearney and Class B champion Pius X in the regular season and remained ranked for much of the season. I think we learned how to play together more as the season went on,” said Dreamer. “We figured out each other’s strengths and weaknesses, too.” The Spartans entered districts as the two seed, beating Omaha Burke 63-54 in the district semifinals. They then traveled to play the eventual Class A state champion, Omaha South. The Spartans fought hard but struggled to stop the Packer offense, losing 69-55 in the district final. East ended the season 20-6. Next season, they will be in a similar position to begin the season after losing seven seniors. But the Spartans will be returning stronger underclassmen talent and experience in junior center Jett Janssen and sophomore guard Carter Glenn. Both Dreamer and Riekenberg will play in college, Dreamer at Northwest Missouri State and Riekenberg at Nebraska Wesleyan.