La Crosse, WIS. (WXOW) -------- They say patience is a virtue for Winona State guard Riley Bambenek being patient has paid off.
After redshirting last season, Bambenek turned in one of the best performances in school history, scoring 33 points to help knock off #9 Minnesota State Mankato.
"He was able to showcase a lot of his talents offensively he did a tremendous job, I didn't think he would have 33 and it was a quiet 33, but surprised no," said Head Coach Mike Leaf.
Bambenek has always had talent, in high school he led G-E-T to the state finals as a senior, which made the decision to redshirt a difficult one.
At first it was hard to accept because I have been playing my whole life, that I was going to sit out and not play for a whole year but then I learned from it how to how to handle yourself how to play the game how to get better so I think in the long run it will help me out," says Bambenek.
The early returns on Bambenek's investment of time are promising, after putting on 12 pounds of muscle, he's started all 9 games for the Warriors averaging 11 points per game.
"It feels good, it's just doing whatever ever coach asks me to do if its to stop the other teams best player or to score points I just want to do whatever they need to win," says Bambenek.
The Winona State Purple and White is in Riley's blood, his brother Jacob is a tight end on the football and his dad Mark is a former Warriors Assistant Basketball Coach.
"I think it's almost been a surreal experience, my dad coached here I wanted the title group of teams those 3/4 years when I was in middle school you just saw Winona they were always with me and it's just a really cool experience," says Bambenek.