SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (KELO) — The top five all-time leading scorers in South Dakota boys basketball history hadn’t changed since 2008. But, this season, not one, but two standout seniors cracked the top five.
Matthew Mors and Connor Libis have become two of the top scorers in South Dakota boys basketball history. Accomplishing that feat didn’t happen overnight, as the pair have been playing varsity since seventh grade.
“It was tough playing as a seven grader, but I don’t think if I played in seventh grade, then I would be where I’m at today,” Yankton senior Matthew Mors said.
“I was probably a little naive and I was playing with a lot of confidence at that time. I don’t think it really sets in until now probably with what that really was,” Dell Rapids St. Mary senior Connor Libis said.
The two seniors have been full-time starters since eighth grade, but continue to put in the work.
“He’s always someone you can find in the gym and he’s always trying to get extra reps in before and after practice. Even on days off when I tell the kids to stay home and rest, you always find him sneaking into the gym,” Dell Rapids St. Mary head coach Colby Fitzgerald said.
“What I’m proud of him for, is he hasn’t wasted one ounce of it. Sometimes you see a kid at a young age that has a lot of talent and gets a lot of attention, they don’t always get the most out of their potential then and I think that’s a testament to Matthew’s work ethic, his character and the type of kid he is,” Yankton head coach Chris Haynes said.
The names near the top of the scoring list rarely change, and never two new entries in the same season.
“I think it’s just so unique that you have two of the most prolific scorers in state history, at the same time. It’s pretty cool and it sounds like Connor is a great kid, Matthew is a great kid too and they’re easy kids to cheer for,” Haynes said.
“You know, it’s pretty surreal. It’s probably something that I always had my mind on it. When I was little, that was something like, oh there’s Louie (Krogman) if somebody wants to go catch Louie,” Libis said. “Josh Mueller was a good friend of mine and he was always telling me, ‘go get me, go get me,’ and I’ve had a lot of people help me get there and just looking at that list, it’s pretty surreal just thinking about it.”
Libis and Mors are gaining respect with every point scored, especially from each other.
“I’ve known Matthew for a long, long time. He’s a really good kid and a really good person. I mean there is no body better to represent South Dakota at the highest level,” Libis said.
“He’s really, really talented and I know he works his butt off a lot and give credit to him because it’s really paying off as you can see. I know he is chasing the same thing that I am and that’s a state title, so I know that’s what we are both working for,” Mors said.
While the two are nearly done with their career, Mors and Libis know that hard work will always pay off.
“Get in the gym, always have a ball in your hands and that’s just what I did, I was in the gym every single day, really no days off,” Mors said. “Just work as hard as you can because you’ll never know where it will take you.”
“You might miss out on some things, but you’re going to be alright,” Libis said. “You’ve just got to keep working and you’ve got to work harder than you think you have to work. It’s a lot but anybody can do it. If I can do it, anybody can do it.”
Libis is currently third on the all-time scoring list with 2,577 points, while Mors is in fifth, just seven points behind him.
|1||Louie Krogman – White River||3,521|
|2||Don Jacobsen – Lake Norden||2,825|
|T-3||Connor Libis – Dell Rapids St. Mary||2,577|
|T-3||Milt Sorenson – Wakonda||2,577|
|5||Matthew Mors – Yankton||2,570|