Summer basketball takes on a whole new meaning for local players competing with Western Kansas Elite teams.
The Skyline High School boy’s basketball coach Kenny Eddy has been busy with basketball this offseason. Eddy coaches one of three Western Kansas Elite (WKE) boys teams. Players on this team range from classes 2020-2023. There is also one girl's team for the class of 2022. Other coaches include Jason Deel and Trey O’Neil.
The WKE-Eddy team has played in five tournaments this spring and summer. Players on Eddy’s team come from big and small schools around western Kansas, including Hays, Dodge City, Hugoton, Minneola, Stafford, as well as three T-Birds Sam Fisher, Steve Fisher, and Mark Schmidt.
“I love having my Skyline guys play for this team because they get exposed to very high-level basketball. They also get to make connections with kids all over the states. That's how you form friendships that last a lifetime,” Eddy said.
Eddy’s team is 16-5 on the summer, including a dominant 6-0 performance at the Great American Shootout Tournament in Dallas, TX. They were also able to take home the trophy at the MAYB Spring Finale.
“We are extremely proud to be able to represent several small communities in Kansas. Our boys, coaches, and parents all just want to show everybody that it doesn't matter what size of town you're from. Given how wide our range is for kids, they don't have many opportunities to practice together. So, we're always just kind of throwing it together on weekends and having fun doing what they love to do,” Eddy said.
Other players from the area include Nathan Adams of Skyline, and Cunningham’s Trey DeWeese, who both play for the WKE-Deel team. This group also has players from Stafford, Trego, Hays, Scott City, and Lakin. They were able to compete at a high level and win their age division at the MAYB Spring Finale. The final WKE team coached by O’Neil, a former FHSU Tiger, has players from Hays, Lakin, Hugoton, and Goodland. Western Kansas Elite has helped develop several players who are playing college basketball at various levels throughout the country.