CLEVELAND – This past season was one filled with ups and downs for the men’s basketball team at Cleveland State University. One of the highlights was the play of multi-time Horizon League Freshman of the Week, Tyree Appleby. The young point guard from Little Rock, Ark. lit up the court both at home and on the road.
He was a key part in every big win this season, including the Vikings’ run to the Horizon League Tournament championship game. He meshed extremely well with other perimeter players Casheem Thomas and Bobby Carpenter.
What made Appley special was the fact that he didn’t just shoot the ball well in crucial moments, but also had the ability to pass the ball well and create openings for teammates when they absolutely needed a bucket. Overall, Appleby played well beyond his years in his freshman season, even despite an early season knee issue..
Despite several one0point losses, and heartbreaking defeats, he never got down on himself or his team, and just kept pushing. Appleby showed the heart, poise and commitment of a champion all season long.
Appleby finished up his freshman season averaging 11.4 points a game over 34 games. He hit 32 percent from behind the 3-point arc, and also sunk 72 percent of his shots from the foul line.
“It was a great experience and through all our ups and downs we kept fighting,” Appleby said of his freshman year.
“He is an exciting young point guard that has court vision and is very quick off of the dribble with and outside shot that continues to develop,” said radio play-by-play man Al Pawlowski. “On top of all of that, he is fearless and showed his savvy for a Freshman this past season.”
First year head coach Dennis Felton will need the play of Appleby and others to continue to improve next season as well. Team leaders Evan Clayborne, who announced his transfer earlier this week, and senior leader Bobby Carpenter will both be departing. Despite the large losses to the roster, Appleby still has high hopes for next season.
“Next season is going to catch everyone by surprise,” he said.
We here at NEOSI believe so as well, and have high hopes for the Vikings.
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