By: Sean Neidig, sports information graduate assistant
COLUMBUS, Ohio – When senior guards Austin Schreck and Joey Weingartner became the 32nd and 33rd members, respectively, of No. 20 Capital University Men's Basketball's 1,000 Point Club this year, the duo became the sixth pair in program history to achieve the mark in the same season but the first since 2002-03.
Schreck, a 6-foot-3-inch combo guard/wing from Erlanger, Ky. reached the milestone first in a 24-point effort on Dec. 8 against Ohio Northern University in a 79-53 win. Weingartner, the newest member of the club, scored his 1,000th point on Jan. 16 against Heidelberg University.
Neither player scored 1,000 points in high school.
"[Reaching 1,000 career points] meant a lot because it's something you dream about as a kid," Schreck said. "It's kind of a culmination of everything you've worked for through an entire lifetime of playing basketball."
"Having a personal goal like that and then being able to do it and share the moment with not just my teammates but with my best friends is special," added Weingartner. "Brotherhood is something that adds a lot to it."
Schreck began his Capital career as an impact freshman in 2015-16. He started all 26 games for the Crusaders and shot better than 60 percent from the floor en route to scoring 202 total points.
The next year, Schreck remained a key part of the Crusaders and increased his scoring output to 293 points while shooting 54.9 percent from the field and averaging career-highs in rebounds (6.2) and assists (2.5).
As a junior, the guard took his offensive game to new heights, shooting better than 50 percent from the floor for the third consecutive year on his way to 398 total points, a then-career-best average of 15.3 points per game. One of the main factors leading to the scoring increase was the introduction of the 3-pointer to Schreck's repertoire. After making five 3-pointers in each of his first two seasons while shooting 10-of-43 from behind the arc in those years, Schreck shot 44.8 percent from deep and hit 30 triples as a junior. He also set a new career high with 76 made free throws and increased his free throw percentage by more than 10 percent over the previous year's mark. Schreck led the team in scoring.
"No doubt my shooting has improved tenfold," Schreck said. "With that also comes the confidence. I've got as much confidence as just about anyone in the country right now but I still like to think of myself as a guy who will drive and get to the basket and isn't afraid to take shots."
That confidence carried over into his senior year as Schreck began the season averaging 13.0 points per game through Capital's first seven contests leading up to Dec. 8, the date he recorded his 1,000th point. In a 79-53 win over Ohio Northern University, Schreck's 16th point that night and 1000th career point came at the free throw line with four minutes remaining in the first half. Schreck finished with 24 points against ONU, the first of four 20-point games in a row. After the relatively slow start, Schreck is now averaging 16.4 points per game, a career high, and has 262 points so far, the second-most on the team. With 1,155 career points, Schreck is currently 23rd on Capital's all-time scoring list and climbing.
"He's more of an inside-out player," Weingartner said when describing Schreck's offensive game. "He'll start games inside and move out. It's really hard to contest his shot because his arms are so long so he can get that space on you. He's got that right hook, he can go post, mid-range, outside. He's really an all-around player"
Weingartner, a 6-foot-2-inch shooting guard from Centerville, Ohio, started his Capital career by scoring 70 points in 17 games his first year in the Purple and White but then increased his scoring pace as a sophomore. In his second year at Capital, Weingartner was second on the team with 310 points, an average of 11.9 per game. While it took Schreck a couple of seasons to develop a 3-point shot, Weingartner was lighting it up from behind the arc since day one. After shooting 46.2 percent from deep as a freshman, he shot 43 percent from three while making 55 triples as a sophomore. He finished second on the team in scoring.
"When he first came in freshman year I remember thinking 'man this guy can shoot,'" Schreck said. "He is a pure scorer. I don't know if I've ever met anyone who can light it up just as much as he can."
As a junior, Weingartner set new career highs in points, field goal percentage, made 3-pointers and again was the second-leading scorer on the team. In his first year starting all of Capital's games, Weingartner scored 365 points for an average of 14.0 per game. He made 65 3-pointers and shot better than 40 percent from deep for the third consecutive year and eclipsed 45 percent from the floor for the first time in his career.
"I've just always been big on hard work and trying to work on all facets of my game," Weingartner said of his improvement over the years. "I can shoot off the dribble, catch and shoot and shoot while I'm moving. I can come off of ball screens. I'm a better ball handler and I can create my own shot. I think my pure strength has helped me a lot offensively. I'm able to move guys around a little more which helps me get open for my shot."
Weingartner began his senior year with back-to-back 20-point games with 22 against Albion College (Mich.) and 26 against Trine University (Ind.). On Nov. 28 against Adrian College (Mich.), Weingartner scored a career-high 32 points on 11-of-20 shooting including a school record-tying nine made 3-pointers. Weingartner scored in double figures in each of Capital's first 11 games and scored 15 or more in nine games. In Capital's 16 games, only twice has Weingartner not scored 10 or more points. He is also averaging a career high at 16.2 points per game.
"I've tried to pattern my game a little bit like Joey's with being able to shoot, coming off screens and shooting and to have the confidence he has," Schreck said. "For sure I've learned a lot from him."
Coming into the year, Schreck did not know exactly how many points he had scored in his career but he knew that he was getting close to 1,000 and that he would likely reach that milestone early in the season.
"I wanted to make it more about getting wins as a team and improving on what we've done in the past three years," he said. "I don't think it'd be as enjoyable if we were sitting here at .500 or with a losing record. Putting it on top of how well we're playing just makes it that much better."
Weingartner echoed that sentiment and likewise did not know exactly how many points he needed until he reached 1,000. The fact that he and Schreck were both so close only added another layer of enthusiasm to Weingartner's pre-season preparation.
"It was exciting and at the same time motivating. My competitive edge wanted to catch [Schreck] before he could get it but he had a little bit of a head start," he laughed. "More than anything it was exciting and it was fun and we got to celebrate. It's just good to see a brother reach a milestone like that."
The friendly competition that came from playing a similar position helped Schreck and Weingartner improve individually but also developed into a recipe for team success, as the Crusaders are seeing this season.
"For the most part, if one of us has a bad game the other one will pick it up," Schreck said of the backcourt partnership. "I'm a guy that will drive and if I'm not getting to the basket I'll kick it out to Joey who is more than likely going to knock it down."
The partnership between Schreck and Weingartner is the latest to lead to entry into the exclusive club of teammates to reach 1,000 career points in the same season in Capital history dating back more than 50 years.
In 1957-58, Chuck Kessler and Mike Outcalt became the first pair of teammates to score their 1,000th points in the same year. More than a decade later, in 1971-72, Bob Arnold, Don Kalb, Mike Stumpf and Scott Weakley all reached the 1,000 career point mark in the same season. Arnold and Kalb were seniors while Stumpf, the program's all-time leading scorer, and Weakley, fifth on the all-time list, reached 1,000 as juniors.
Another decade after that, Tracy Colston and Joe Glassco crossed the threshold in 1982-83. The program then had to wait 20 years until Geron Tate and Tony Ruberg became the latest pair of teammates to record their 1,000th points in the same campaign in '02-'03.
"I wasn't too aware of how many people have done it or who the highest scorers were but after doing so, I researched a little bit and it's definitely a very cool experience to go down in Capital history," Schreck said.
The duo and the rest of the Crusaders will try to make a little more history over the remainder of the season with only nine games remaining in the regular season. At 13-3, 8-1 in the Ohio Athletic Conference, Capital is off to one of the best starts in years. Capital's next opportunity for a victory will come on Friday, Jan. 18 at Ohio Northern. Tipoff is scheduled for 7 p.m.