NORTH SIOUX CITY, S.D. (KELO) — Dakota Valley Junior Paul Bruns is one of five nominees for the Boys Sanford Pentagon/Keloland Media Group Player of the Year. The Panthers standout had an explosive offensive season, leading Dakota Valley to the State Tournament.
Paul Bruns scored in every way imaginable, as he averaged 29 points per game this year.
“Was able to get a lot of points off of my teammates passing me the ball, coaches drawing up great plays for me. It was just letting the game come to me,” Dakota Valley Junior Guard Paul Pruns said.
“If a team takes away his three, he’s good at putting it on the floor. If a team pressures him outside, he’ll take them inside. If he has a bigger guy on him, he’ll take them outside,” Dakota Valley Head Coach Jason Kleis said.
But scoring was just part of his sensational season, as Bruns also grabbed nearly 13 rebounds a game and dished out 3.5 assists per contest.
“You got to rebound to get stops on defense, so that’s what we needed a lot of this year. Passing the ball obviously when my teammates are open, and just making the right play to help our team win,” Bruns said.
Another area Bruns excelled in this year was stepping into a leadership role.
“Became more vocal. Became more confident. All those little things. Just wanting to win more than anything. Took another step in all those things. Got his teammates involved even more.
Bruns’ 4th season playing varsity showcased his talents to the entire state, and will be one he’ll remember despite the unusual ending.
“The game’s slowing down a lot for me. My teammates have been great. I’ve been on a lot of great teams. So, getting a lot of experience, and just having a lot of fun with my teammates and coaches,” Bruns said.
The Sanford Pentagon/KELOLAND Media Group Player of the Year special will air Friday, April 17th at 6:30 p.m. The 30-minute special will include features on all ten nominees, including our two winners, and a message from Kansas men’s basketball coach Bill Self.