BURNET — The season of accomplishment for the Burnet High School boys basketball team was highlighted by several players being named to All-District 8-3A teams.
Senior guard Stewart Berg was named the Defensive Player of the Year, while sophomore guard Grant Cole was named the Newcomer of the Year.
Head coach Roy Kiser said he couldn’t begin to summarize Berg’s contributions.
“We had to have Stuart play well for us to win ball games,” the coach said. “Stuart gave us the ability to defend perimeter players because of his athleticism. His height and length also made it difficult to shoot over.”
Berg’s individual honor comes down to work ethic, Kiser said.
“This honor really reflects on the kind of player Stuart was for us,” the coach said. “To be good at playing defense, you have to be unselfish and a hard worker. Stuart possessed both of those qualities.”
Kiser was especially happy for Cole.
“What started out as an experiment in the spring of 2009 became a major factor in our success this season,” Kiser said. “We thought then that Grant could play point guard for us, but what we didn’t know was how well he would do. He far exceeded our expectations. He became a leader on the floor because of his ability to learn quickly and his basketball IQ. He was eager to accept coaching and quick to apply it.”
Senior post Chaston Hall and senior forward Ben Cardozo were named to the first team, while senior forward Tyler Scott was named to the second team.
“Chaston was really our go-to guy all year,” Kiser said. “We really never played anyone who could stop him. He used his size and strength to constantly put his defender at a disadvantage.
“Ben gave us a huge inside-out threat,” the coach added. “Ben worked so hard in the spring of his junior year to make himself a great shooter and strong player.
“We looked to Tyler to be our vocal leader,” he continued. “I will miss Tyler because of his competitive spirit.”
Senior forward John Melvin and senior guard Kory Everts were honorable mention.
“John was the perfect example of a team player and team leader,” Kiser said. “John was always quick to see a coaching strategy that could work or needed to be changed.
“Kory developed into a great shooter for us and had some really big games, including the bi-district win over Glen Rose,” the coach added.
The Bulldogs (24-9) finished second in district and won its bi-district contest against Glen Rose, 64-42.
They have left a legacy behind for those who follow them, Kiser said.
“These guys were true ambassadors for our program,” he said. “I was reminded recently of the high school players that I idolized growing up and how they instilled in me a love of basketball. I have no doubt that these seniors have been the high school heroes of many young boys in Burnet who will become players for us.”