University of Wisconsin-River Falls
Falcon Sports

2006-07 Falcon Men's Basketball Pre-Season Information

as of Nov. 14, 2006

Location: River Falls, WI 54022
Enrollment: 6,100
Chancellor: Don Betz
WIAC faculty representatives: Jim Mulvey, Barbara Rebhuhn
Athletic director: Rick Bowen (phone: 715/425-3246)
Assistant athletic director: Patti Ford (phone: 715/425-3244)
Head coach: Jeff Berkhof (1st season, 0-0 career record) 715/425-3276
Assistant coaches: Pedro Renta, Kevin Landrum, Kurran Sagan
National affiliation: National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Div. III
Conference: Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference
Conference members: Eau Claire, La Crosse, Oshkosh, Platteville, River Falls, Stevens Point, Stout, Superior, Whitewater
Nickname: Falcons
Colors: Red and White
WIAC championships: (12) 1916, 1917, 1920, 1923, 1927, 1929, 1930, 1936, 1947, 1949, 1950, 2004
2006 overall record: 6-19
2006 conference record, finish: 5-11, 7th place
2006 letter winners lost: (8) Joey Cowley (G), Jimmy Glaeser (G), Nick Hall (G), Hans Hoeg (G), Mark James (F), Eric Kossoris (G), Alex Maas (F), Ryan Zylstra (F)
2006 letter winners returning: (7) Jesse Elling (G), Scott Kelly (F), Erik Olson (G), Tim Pearson (F), Cory Rondeau (F), Ryan Thompson (G), Rory Trimbo (F)
Home arena, phone: Karges Center (2,000), 715-425-3900
Trainer: Gary Eloranta 715/425-3130
Sports information director: Jim Thies 715/425-3846 (e-mail:
Athletic department web site:
Basketball web site:
Sports information fax: 715/425-4486

2006-07 Season Preview
The 2006-07 Falcons men's basketball team will have a different look to them this season due to an off-season of major changes both on the roster and with the coaching staff.

The team will look to start anew after the retirement of Head Coach Rick Bowen and having to replace three starters from last season, including Hans Hoeg, the Falcons leading scorer and rebounder the last two years. The Falcons hope to rally together this season with strong team chemistry and an influx of new talent. Eight new players will put on a Falcon uniform this season, six of them freshmen. It will be a season of opportunity for many of them to play and showcase their talent.

Bowen hands the baton to interim Coach Jeff Berkhof, a 12-year assistant under Bowen. For the last nine seasons Berkhof has been Bowen's top assistant. He will be looking to place an emphasis on sound defense and rebounding along with an offense that will try to bring out the strengths of his players. Besides having major personnel losses, the team has also experienced a rough stretch the last two seasons. After the memorable 2003-04 campaign in which the Falcons won 20 games in route to their first WIAC Championship in over 50 years, the team has stumbled a bit the last two seasons.

Bowen stepped down this off-season as coach to become the full-time UWRF athletic director. In his 20 seasons as the head coach, Bowen compiled a 265-249 record and a conference title in 2003-04. The last two seasons haven't been as memorable, as the Falcons have went a combined 14-36, including 6-19 last season. Berkhof believes that last year's team was not as bad as the record would imply. "We were a pretty solid team the second half of the season, we just lost a lot of close games and we played a very demanding non-conference schedule early in the season," said Berkhof. The Falcons lost a total of five games last season by three points or less. If the Falcons win those games they are just a hair under .500 on the season. In 2006-07, the Falcons hope to be on the other side of those close games.

Berkhof shares many of the coaching philosophies of Bowen, including the motion offense, but he also wants to infuse a few of his own strategies. He would like to take the concepts of the motion offense and tweak it some. Berkhof feels that the team has got to be fundamentally strong and solid defensively to be successful. "We have to win the games within the game of basketball which to us includes three things: points in the paint, rebounds and limiting turnovers."

So far in practice, Berkhof has noticed many things that have him excited about his first season as head coach. With the loss of eight players from last season, Berkhof has the job of figuring out who his contributors are going to be this year. His two returning starters are locks to play huge roles this year but other than that many players can expect to see time. Even the large crop of this year's freshmen class will be called upon to perform. One thing has been evident to Berkhof this year, all his players are hungry to win and basketball is very important to them.

The team returns two starters in juniors Scott Kelly and Ryan Thompson. Thompson, playing the point position, led the WIAC in assists last season (112) while averaging 6.1 points per game. He was also named the team's Most Improved Player and earned a spot on the WIAC Scholastic Honor Roll. He hopes to have a break out season as a junior. Kelly, a 6-5 forward, started 15 games last season, averaging 4.2 points per game. He averaged nearly 20 minutes a game as a sophomore last season and should expect to see that number sprout in 2006. Berkhof will be looking to them, junior forward Tim Pearson and junior college transfer Courtney Davis to serve as leaders this season.

Davis, a 6-2 guard from Mesabi Range Community & Technical College in Virginia, Minn., averaged 18.8 points per game and 8.8 rebounds per game last season. Both numbers were good for fifth in the MCCC North Division. Berkhof expects him to play a large role in the success of this year's team. Another guard who is expected to pick up the slack in the scoring department is freshman Jontae Koonkaew from Apple Valley High School. "Davis and Koonkaew provide the ability to create their own shot when needed," said Berkhof. Koonkaew is a 5-8 guard who makes up for his size with tremendous speed and quickness. "He will be a crowd favorite," added Berkhof.

Erik Olson, a 6-4 guard who played in 21 games last season as a freshman, as well as former River Falls High School player Jesse Elling, should provide depth at the guard position.

2006-07 Falcon Schedule
Nov. 17 at Bethel Tip Off Tournament, vs. William Penn, 6 p.m.
Nov. 18 at Bethel Tip Off Tournament, 6 or 8 p.m. vs. Bethel or Dakota State
Nov. 25 Macalester, 7 p.m.
Nov. 29 at Superior*, 7 p.m.
Dec. 2 Stevens Point*, 3 p.m.
Dec. 6 at Eau Claire*, 6 p.m.
Dec. 9 Platteville*, 1 p.m.
Dec. 12 Bethany Lutheran, 7 p.m.
Dec. 14 at Crown, 7:30 p.m.
Dec. 16 at Con.-St. Paul, 7 p.m.
Dec. 29 Cenex Harvest States Holiday Tournament
St. Scholastica vs. St. Thomas, 6 p.m.
River Falls vs. North Central, 8 p.m.
Dec. 30 Cenex Harvest States Holiday Tournament
Consolation Game, 6 p.m.
Championship Game, 8 p.m.
Jan. 2 Finlandia, 8 p.m.
Jan. 6 at Whitewater*, 1 p.m.
Jan. 10 Stout*, 7 p.m.
Jan. 13 Oshkosh*, 1 p.m.
Jan. 17 La Crosse*, 7 p.m.
Jan. 20 at Stevens Point*, 3 p.m.
Jan. 24 Superior*, 7 p.m.
Jan. 27 at Oshkosh*, 1 p.m.
Jan. 31 at Stout*, 7 p.m.
Feb. 3 at Platteville*, 1 p.m.
Feb. 7 Eau Claire*, 6 p.m.
Feb. 10 Whitewater*, 1 p.m.
Feb. 14 at La Crosse*, 7 p.m.
Feb. 20 WIAC Tournament Playoffs**, TBD

* WIAC Games

2005-06 Falcon Results
6-19 overall, 5-11 WIAC
Home 3-8, Away 3-9, Neutral site 0-2
Date W/L Score Opponent Leading scorers Leading rebounders
Nov. 18 L 57-54 Con.-St. Paul Hoeg 16, Zylstra 14 James, Hoeg 7 each
Nov. 19 L 78-67 at St. John's Hoeg 17, Kossoris 12 Zylstra 5
Nov. 25 L 86-71 vs. Concordia-Irvine^ Hoeg 19, Kelly 10 Kossoris, James, Maas 5
Nov. 26 L 75-67 vs. Westmont^ Hoeg, James 12 James, Zylstra 4
Nov. 30 W 61-55 Superior* Kossoris 20, Hoeg 18 Kossoris 6
Dec. 3 L 74-53 at Stevens Point* Hoeg 14. James 9 Hoeg 8, James 4
Dec. 7 L 57-56 at Eau Claire* Hoeg 21, Rondeau 10 James, Rondeau 7
Dec. 10 L 58-45 Platteville* Zylstra 10, Kossoris 9 James 4, Rondeau 3
Dec. 14 L 62-54 at Macalester Hoeg 24, Zylstra 11 Kossoris 7
Dec. 16 W 79-61 at Bethany Lutheran Pearson 19, Hoeg 16 Hoeg 5
Dec. 29 L 65-64 Simpson& Thompson 18, Hoeg 16 James 7, Hoeg 5
Dec. 30 L 56-53 St. Thomas& Hoeg 17, Zylstra 14 Zylstra 6, Hoeg 4
Jan. 7 L 76-65 Whitewater* Zylstra 22, Hoeg 14 Zylstra 9, James 6
Jan. 11 W 66-57 at Stout* Hoeg 26, Zylstra 14 Zylstra 9, Hoeg 6
Jan. 14 L 55-49 at Oshkosh* Hoeg 15, Zylstra 10 Maas 7
Jan. 18 L 57-55 at La Crosse* Hoeg 19, Zylstra 14 Hoeg, Zylstra 6
Jan. 21 L 70-56 Stevens Point* Zylstra 18, Hoeg 14 James 10, Zylstra 7
Jan. 25 W 75-60 at Superior* Hoeg 31, Thompson 12 Hoeg 9, Zylstra 6
Jan. 28 W 58-56 Oshkosh* Hoeg 21, Zylstra 13 5 with 3 each
Feb. 1 L 63-49 Stout* Olson 14, Zylstra 9 James 6
Feb. 4 L 70-56 at Platteville* Hoeg 23, Zylstra 13 Zylstra 6
Feb. 8 W 59-57 Eau Claire* Zylstra 27, Hoeg 21 Zylstra 9, Maas 7
Feb. 11 L 81-56 at Whitewater* Zylstra 13, Hoeg 9 James, Kelly, Zylstra 4
Feb. 15 L 80-75 2OT La Crosse* Zylstra 26, Hoeg 18 Zylstra, Hoeg 9
Feb. 21 L 75-65 at Stout** Hoeg 18, Zylstra 14 Kossoris, Zylstra 7

^ at California Irvine Tournament (Maui, Hawaii)
& Cenex Harvest States Tourney
* WIAC Games
** WIAC Tournament Game

2006 Returning Letter Winners

Name Pos. Hgt. Wgt. Yr. Hometown/Last Team
Jesse Elling G 6-0 185 So. River Falls, WI
Scott Kelly F 6-5 220 Jr. Hastings, MN
Erik Olson G 6-4 185 So. South Stratford, VT/Hanover
Tim Pearson F 6-5 190 Jr. Eau Claire, WI/Memorial
Cory Rondeau F 6-7 230 Jr. Grand Rapids, MN
Ryan Thompson G 6-0 190 Jr. Viroqua, WI
Rory Trimbo F 6-6 250 So. Belle Plaine, MN

Falcon 2006 Statistics

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