V-Hawks Men’s Basketball hoping to continue successful streak


Jack Monis attacks the paint

Noah Nelson, Sports Editor

After last season’s success, expectations are high for Viterbo Men’s Basketball Team. In the 2021-22 season, the Viterbo Men’s Basketball Team won their first NSAA regular season title, and although many players graduated, there is hope that their success can be repeated.  

The Lumen interviewed the team’s Head Coach Wayne Wagner who is entering his 24th season as head coach. He is also coming off of his third Conference Coach of the Year award. On top of this, Wagner won the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association (WBCA) Coach of the Year award in the 2021-22 season. 

The team has faced strong competition in their first two games of the year but managed to win both. Their first game was on the road against Cardinal Stritch on Oct. 29, and the men closed out a narrow victory with 78-70. Jack Monis led the team with 15 points and 8 rebounds. Cole Crubel contributed four three pointers off the bench, and the team had five double-digit scorers.  

Their next game took place on Nov. 2 against Judson. The V-Hawks won another close road game 72-71. The game was within seven points the entire time and there were ten lead changes. Monis again led the team with 20 points and eight rebounds, and Dakota Mannel led the team in assists with four. 

The men will participate in a flurry of non-conference games throughout November, with a string of six games in ten days. The final two competitions in this stretch with be at the Viterbo Invitational. The event will take place from Nov. 18-19, and the team attendees are Bellevue, Cardinal Stritch and Indiana University Northwest.  

Coach Wagner says that this stretch of non-conference games “Challenges our players and helps us learn what we need to work on before the bulk of conference play.” Most of these games are in the final thirteen games of the season, starting on Jan. 6 and running consistently until Feb. 16.  

In last year’s conference play, the Men’s Basketball Team won a co-championship title with Bellevue at the end of the Conference regular season. Although many members of this team have graduated, having other players step up makes the season all the more interesting. As Coach Wagner says, “They’re hard workers which makes it fun to piece it together.” 

Returning athletes help make this process easier. Senior Forward Jack Monis has impacted winning on multiple levels. As a sophomore, he was an All-American Honorable Mention and Viterbo’s Male Athlete of the Year. Last year, he was NSAA First Team All-Conference and the NSAA Player of the Year. So far this year, Monis is averaging 17.5 points and 8 rebounds through the first two contests, continuing his dominant run. The V-Hawks also have Robert Cunitz returning as a multiple-time all-conference forward, adding to the team’s inner strength. 

The Viterbo Men’s Basketball Team’s season began in November and will run until February with the hope to repeat NSAA Conference success. Multiple All-Conference performers form the foundation and new contributors look to make an impact. Be sure to keep an eye on this team in their future efforts.