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Carroll County Boys Basketball Player of the Year: Getting bigger, stronger lifted Man Valley’s Brett DeWees to new heights

Manchester Valley senior Brett DeWees is the 2020 Carroll County Times Boys Basketball Player of the Year.
Manchester Valley senior Brett DeWees is the 2020 Carroll County Times Boys Basketball Player of the Year.(Dylan Slagle/Carroll County Times)

Brett DeWees lived in his own basketball limbo for most of last season.

The Manchester Valley High School shooting guard entered his third year of hoops as a role player, something DeWees handled but couldn’t get comfortable with. Baseball was taking up most of his time and energy, and for that his basketball game suffered.

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A late-February game against Owings Mills helped change things for the junior. DeWees connected on seven 3-pointers and finished with 25 points in a win.

“It was kind of like, ‘Oh, I’m capable of being a big part of the team,’ ” DeWees said. “I had a couple good games after that, and then we get to the offseason. ... I’m just going to take basketball and baseball seriously, take them both seriously.”

The results were evident — DeWees went from a reliable reserve to Man Valley’s go-to player, and his senior season was one to remember. DeWees led Carroll County in scoring and rebounding, came close to averaging a double-double, and earned Times Boys Basketball Player of the Year honors.

The Mavs finished in the middle of the Carroll County Athletic League standings, but DeWees created problems for opponents all winter long. He averaged 17.9 points and 8.8 rebounds, both tops among CCAL players, and added 2.3 steals and 1.2 assists per game.

DeWees improved in many of his categories (9.8 ppg, 2.6 rpg, 1.5 apg, 0.9 spg as a junior), and in his overall shooting. He came in at 45.4% from the floor, and 33% from behind the 3-point line.

DeWees also led the CCAL in field goals made with 153, and he drained 33 3-pointers.

Defenses took notice of the senior’s changes, and so did first-year coach Chris Wunder.

“I think the No. 1 thing is he got stronger,” Wunder said. “Dedicating time over the offsesaon to lift weights really helped his game. He was more versatile this year.

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“I think it was more about getting the job done. I’ve coached him since third- or fourth-grade, and he’s always had that within himself. Not really taking plays off this year, saying, ‘OK, you need me to rebound, I’m going to rebound,’ as opposed to conserving energy. He went out there every day and he competed hard.”

DeWees credits his workout regimen for helping build muscle and stamina. Lifting weights also helped him recover from a broken hip he suffered last summer, he said, running a sprint during a baseball workout.

Not being able to stay active for six weeks led to an extra 20 pounds DeWees said he knew wasn’t going to be beneficial to his basketball game as a 6-foot guard.

“Got in the weight room, started eating healthy, got my weight down to like 200, but I was a lot stronger,” DeWees said. “I lifted for three months. That helped me too. Last year I was more of a spot-up shooter, and I was finishing inside more this year.”

DeWees posted 10 double-doubles this winter, and got to the basket as much as he could. He dropped 29 points in a road win over Liberty on Jan. 14, four days after scoring 23 in a victory against Winters Mill.

His 23 points and 10 rebounds helped the Mavs beat Hereford to close out the regular season.

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“I went from barely jumping to dunking a basketball,” DeWees said about his physical stature. “I took that upon myself. I can’t hit seven 3s in every game.”

Not starting throughout last season motivated DeWees to work harder this year, he said, while realizing his basketball career wouldn’t be continuing past high school. The all-county catcher is headed to York College, where he plans to play baseball at the next level.

Manchester Valley senior Brett DeWees, left, jumps to take a shot while defended by Century's John Pavlick during the first half of their game in Manchester Friday, Jan. 3, 2020.
Manchester Valley senior Brett DeWees, left, jumps to take a shot while defended by Century's John Pavlick during the first half of their game in Manchester Friday, Jan. 3, 2020.(Dylan Slagle/Carroll County TImes)

But DeWees said he feels like he left a solid mark within Manchester Valley’s basketball program — thanks in part to this season, he’s not always going to be known as the younger brother of Mackenzie DeWees, a four-time Times Girls Basketball Player of the Year and Carrol County’s all-time leading scorer.

“I’ve been around the game a lot, and baseball just kind of always drew me,” Brett DeWees said. “But with basketball, I loved it just as much as baseball.”














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