By Ryan Murken
Your Prep Sports
TIFFIN – Tate Thomsen thought about his senior season a lot.
All the times Thomsen spent envisioning his final season of basketball, the Clear Creek Amana senior guard never imagined a season like this.
Clear Creek Amana is 2-16, lost 14 consecutive games at one point and is winless in conference play.
After thinking about his senior season for so long did Thomsen ever consider tossing in the towel when things didn’t go the way he planned?
“This isn’t the year that we wanted but we are still out here having fun,” Thomsen said. “We are all close and that’s the best part of it is that no one has given up at all. We are all still fighting and having fun.”
Led by Thomsen, the Clippers showed how serious they are about finishing out the season last week.
Thomsen turned in his best week of the season, averaging 18 points in three games and helped Clear Creek Amana end its 14-game losing streak with a 61-52 win over Washington.
“He is just an all-around great kid,” first-year Clear Creek Amana coach Brandon Clubb said of Thomsen. “He’s a smart kid, he’s a leader and he has done a great job of rising to that occasion because we didn’t have that and he needed to slide in there and he did.”
Thomsen had 22 points in a 58-53 loss to Williamsburg on Tuesday and 18 in a 56-48 near miss against Independence on Friday.
On a quick turnaround, Thomsen scored 14 points and handed out five assists in a road win at Washington on Saturday.
In his first season as a starter Thomsen has quickly become the go-to scorer for the Clippers, averaging a team-high 13.2 points per game.
“He has slid into that role of kind of being our go-to guy and he has done an outstanding job with it,” Clubb said. “He can hit tough shots, when we have needed him to he has scored.”
The sixth man on a Clipper team that started five seniors a year ago, Thomsen has been looked to for far more than point production this season.
He has been looked to as a leader on a young Clear Creek Amana squad.
“It was a big change this year but I think we are used to our roles know and we all know what we are supposed to do,” Thomsen said. “I knew coming into the year I would have to play a bigger role than I did last year and I’ve taken that on and tried to be a better leader on the team and set an example for everyone.”
In addition to his leadership, Thomsen has been asked to do a little bit of everything on the court.
The 6-foot-3 senior ranks second on the team in rebounding with 5.6 per game and is second with 2.1 assists per game.
“I just tried to work on my all-around game but I want to try to get to the basket and get to the free throw line,” Thomsen said. “That kind of sets up everything else that I can do.”
It is his versatility on offense that makes Thomsen so effective.
He leads the Clippers in made 3-pointers and is a 78 percent free throw shooter.
Much of what the Clippers do on offense revolves around the matchups the 6-3 Thomsen is able to exploit.
“He can do a lot of things,” Clubb said. “We try to post him up, we try to get him at the 3, we try to put him in screen and roll, we try to do a lot of things because he is hard to guard and a lot of it depends on how the other team is guarding him and who they have on him.”