Cross Named WIAC Player of the Year
Madison, Wis. – The University of Wisconsin-Platteville junior Chas Cross was named Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (WIAC) Men's Basketball Player of the Year, while sophomore Jake Manning earned honorable mention honors. Senior Rob Stallion was named All-Defensive Team and senior Marcus Jackson is the Pioneers' representative on the All-Sportsmanship Team.
To go with Cross' Player of the Year honor, he was also selected first-team All-WIAC. The Winnebago, Ill. native, led the conference in points (15.8 ppg.), rebounds (8.5 rpg.), and free throw attempts (137). He ranked second in blocks (46), fourth in field goal percentage (.564), 10th in steals (1.32 spg.) and 13th in free throw percentage (.677) in the league. The six-foot-eight-inch center recorded seven double-doubles, which put him 91st in the nation. He totaled 442 points, 46 blocks, 45 assists, 37 steals and 237 rebounds for the year. He grabbed a career-best 15 rebounds at UW-Eau Claire (Feb. 13) to go with his 17 points, five assists and four blocks. Cross tied a career-high with 27 points versus UW-River Falls (Jan. 26) and made 9-10 from the free throw line. He was just three blocks away from breaking Jeff Skemp's single season block record, and Cross is the first Pioneer to be named Player of Year since Skemp was co-Player of the Year in 2009.
Manning averaged 8.8 points and 4.7 rebounds per game. The Cedar Rapids, Iowa native, tallied two double-doubles and tied a career-high 21 points against UW-La Crosse (Feb. 9). He scored a team-high three times and grabbed team-high rebounds in five games.
Stallion ends his stellar career in the Orange and Blue with his first all-WIAC recognition of his career. He was the Pioneers best defender and was counted on to lock down the opponent's best scorer. The Cleveland, Ohio native, averaged 7.9 points, 3.6 rebounds, 1.9 assists and 1.4 steals per game. Stallion recorded a career-best four steals in the Pioneers, 60-58, victory over UW-La Crosse in the quarterfinals of the WIAC tournament.
Senior guard teammate Jackson was named to the WIAC All-Sportsmanship Team for his display of exemplary sportsmanship throughout the season.