YANKTON, SD Cooper Cornemann is a natural on the basketball court, just not in his own family considering his dad and brother.
"They both wrestled in college and throughout high school. So I'm kind of the odd ball out of the guys in my family," Cornemann says.
"His dad is a Hall of Fame wrestler for SDSU and a national champion. Those three sisters, I think, kind of got Cooper going with basketball and we're glad that they converted him over," Yankton Head Coach Chris Haynes says.
All three of his older sisters went on to play in college, two at South Dakota State, and were big influences.
"Ketty, for example, she never really put a ball down. I think she was always doing something. Just competitiveness, that you're not as good as you think you are and you can always be better," Cooper says.
That was enforced when he started playing for Yankton and alongside Matthew Mors.
"Some times I got to keep him in check. You know if he gets out of hand I've got to make sure he's staying focused," Cornemann says with a grin.
Though the Wisconsin-bound Mors was the Bucks focal point, Cooper ran the show at point guard.
"High IQ player and a guy, like I said, that can create some opportunities for teammates to score and for himself," Haynes says.
"I didn't think being a wingman was going to be good enough. We needed a little bit more, not even scoring, just playmaking," Cooper says.
Cornemann excelled as a senior, averaging 15 points, four rebounds and three assists per game, and being honored as the Spirit of Su award winner.
"To be able to have someone else who can go out and score, you know, 15 or 20 points a game, and consistently night in and night out, was obviously a huge part of our success this year," Haynes says.
Next year Cooper will follow in his sisters footsteps and walk-on at SDSU.
"I feel like I can kind of give them what they need in that spot and push other guys and make the team better. That's my main goal, just make everyone better around me," Cornemann says.
In a role that seems a natural fit.
In Yankton, Zach Borg, Dakota News Now Sports.