WATERTOWN – There was no doubt that Watertown-Mayer senior Will McBee was a man on a mission this season for the Royals. After missing the Royals’ playoff run last season due to injuries, McBee made the most of every single game in his senior season. The result was an impressive season all around, earning him the 2019-2020 Herald Journal Boys Basketball Player of The Year.
“Will was our rock this season inside,” W-M coach Kent Janikula said. “Every team we played knew we were going to play through him. Teams scouted us to take him away. Despite that, he put up consistent numbers all season long.”
McBee finished the season averaging a double-double with 16.5 points and 10.1 rebounds per game. If that’s not enough, he was also fourth on the team in assists with 49.
“He is an unselfish player that makes the correct read in the post,” Janikula said. “He doesn’t force shots. When a double team came, he did a great job of finding the open man.”
McBee’s ability to do so many things for the Royals was the key to their success this season. Whether being relied on to score or defend, McBee was always there for his team in each game.
“Another thing that he deserves credit for is his defense,” Janikula said. “He is no slouch inside. He played in all 28 games this season and did not foul out once. He never once was taken out of the game either for foul trouble. To be a defensive presence like he was. and not ever be in foul trouble is tremendous.”
The Royals had a goal this season, as a team, to be at least .500 in the Wright County Conference. They did that, and McBee was a big reason why. After losing their point guard from last season (Jayden Heimermann who transferred to Mound Westonka), McBee stepped up his game in a big way all season long.
The 15 wins this season for McBee and the Royals were the most in a single season since the 2017 team racked up 24 wins in Trae Berhow’s senior year.
McBee’s most impressive stretch of the season came in mid-January. Against Glencoe-Silver Lake, McBee had a monster game with 32 points and 23 rebounds. He followed that up in the next game, against New London-Spicer, with 26 points and 10 rebounds.
“We could count on him night in and night out to give us a consistent effort and output,” Janikula said. “Having a post who puts up consistent numbers and stays out of foul trouble is a coach’s dream.”