EXETER – The bright lights weren’t always shining on Exeter-Milligan senior Max Zeleny.
But that is not what the Timberwolves senior was all about.
He came to work every day, punched the time clock and went about getting the job done on both the football field and the basketball court and was one of the Timberwolves team leaders.
The accolades and the recognition he received were all a product of his approach to whichever sport was in season.
One thing for certain was that when Dean Filipi (head coach for both football and basketball) needed something he always looked to his senior to get him that big extra yard, make a huge defensive play or find the open player on the basketball court.
“Max didn’t always have the most points, but he did everything else and helped the others to score,” commented Filipi at the end of the 2019-2020 basketball season.
The YNT scoring title in basketball went to Zeleny’s teammate Jackson Beethe with 26.5 points per game. Max was responsible for 4.7 assists per game last season and that is why the Timberwolves offense delivered.
“Max is the reason our offense worked. He did a great job of getting the ball to the correct person and time,” Filipi said.
At 6-foot 2-inches and 215 pounds Filipi was rarely out worked on the boards and during the football season he knew where the football was and he had a nose to get to it.
“He’s a physical player with a good nose for the ball,” Filipi said of Zeleny.
During the football season Zeleny had 86 tackles and he picked off two passes to help lead the Bobcats Exeter-Milligan/Friend Bobcats defense.
On the offensive side of the ball he ran for 704 yards and nine touchdowns, while hauling in 17 passes for 175 yards. In the team’s win over Nebraska City Lourdes, Zeleny had a monster game with 216 yards rushing and three touchdowns.
The senior leader was an all-district selection and he was a York News-Times All-Area pick.
On the basketball court he averaged 14.1 points per game and was among the area leaders in rebounding with 7.5 per night.
In the team’s win over Nebraska Lutheran before Christmas, Zeleny posted an impressive double-double with 13 points and 20 rebounds. He also added six assists in that game as well.
Along with his 4.7 assists he also could step out back behind the three-point circle and knock down the three-pointer. He made 27 3’s on the year and he was 44 of 64 at the free throw line.
Zeleny earned Crossroads Conference honorable mention and he was a Class D2 All-State honorable mention choice in the Omaha World-Herald.