By Matt Nestor
Prep Sports Reporter
The Winnebago Indians just missed out on a state championship this season, but one of their top players is going to get a chance to play for more championships at the next level.
Senior Matt Reinke has signed on to play with NAIA Division II Cardinal Stritch University, where he will join their basketball program next season.
The Wolves recently won the national championship at their level. They did so despite a lack of good 3-point shooters, something they hope to have solved with the addition of Reinke.
“That addresses that need for sure,” Cardinal Stritch coach Drew Diener said. “One of the things we love about him is he is a pure shooter. More times than not, he’s making shots. And when he is missing shots, they’re good misses, not poor shot selection.”
Reinke was a first-team all-state selection his senior season while leading the Indians to a third-place finish in the IHSA Class 2A state tournament.
At Cardinal Stritch, Diener said his team plays three guards in their offense at one time, and loses a few of the five guards that played on this year’s championship team, meaning there will be minutes available for Reinke as a freshman.
“He’s a guy who knows the game. He’s smart, and he’s going to help us,” Diener said. “His feel for the game is great. He seems like he’s been around the game forever. He’s unselfish, and makes great basketball plays.”
Diener not only pointed to just Reinke’s game, but the growing basketball hotbed in the Rock River area. He said former Rockford Boylan Catholic star Chris Miller has become a star for Saint Francis, who plays in the same conference, and hopes to be able to mine the area for more talent, starting with a star in Reinke.
“It’s great when you get good players with good reputations to come to our school,” Diener said. “Matt is such a good kid, and his family is a good group of people, there will be a lot of people advocating for us down there.”
Auburn seniors sign with St. Ambrose
Reinke is not the only area player moving on to the next level. Rockford Auburn saw a renaissance in their football program, and several of their players are going to be able to take advantage of that success to move on to college.
All NIC-10 defensive end and co-captain Edward Robinson and all NIC-10 offensive lineman Isaiah Farson will both be signing to play NAIA football with St. Ambrose University.
The players will be signing their letter of intent Thursday, April 11, in the school library at Auburn High School. Robinson will study business and theater while Farson will study exercise science and criminal law.
From the April 10-16, 2013, issue