Tyler Semenas releases a 3-pointer against St. Norbert. The long-range shot is one of the areas in which he has improved after undergoing a couple of hip surgeries.
Tyler Semenas releases a 3-pointer against St. Norbert. The long-range shot is one of the areas in which he has improved after undergoing a couple of hip surgeries.

   When Tyler Semenas approached Ryan Kane about playing basketball at Ripon College, he received an unexpected response.

   “Initially, I said, ‘No,’” the Ripon head coach said.

   Semenas, a Rosendale native, played his first three years at Cardinal Stritch in Milwaukee before using a medical redshirt last season following hip surgery.

   Kane knew Semenas was considering transferring to another school for his last year of eligibility, but didn’t hear from him until a few days before school started.

   “He went down to Cardinal Stritch to enroll in classes and it just didn’t feel right to him,” Kane said. “And at that moment, it was basically the 11th hour. He came to me and wanted to come here. And, at first, I wasn’t very open to the idea because we were starting school in a little bit and I hadn’t had an opportunity to talk to the team about it.”

   After Kane said “No,” Semenas asked him if he would reconsider. Kane did just that.

   “I kind of laid everything out there for him about what my expectations were going to be for him this year and if he could handle those expectations then it could be a good fit,” Kane said. “I met with all the seniors on the team because it’s a big number ... I wanted to make sure that they were going to be OK with someone coming into the mix with them and I wasn’t surprised [with their answer] ... Each one of them said, ‘We would be willing to bring him in.’ And then, boy, he hit the ground running.”

   The decision to bring Semenas on board has paid dividends. He has helped the Red Hawks earn a share of third place in the Midwest Conference.

   He is Ripon’s second-leading scorer with 14.8 points per game.

Read the full story, which includes information on why Semenas decided to come to Ripon, how he has changed as a basketball player and how it feels to be the oldest player on the basketball team, in the Feb. 8, 2018 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.