Westminster Christian Academy’s Brennan Orf knew what he wanted to do from the day he stepped foot on the campus.
“Coming into my freshman year, it was always a goal of mine to get 1,000 points, especially, when I saw two seniors at Westminster do it my freshman year, said Orf, who is a senior forward. “My sister was in the 1,000 kills club for volleyball so I had to match her as well.”
The 6-foot-3 Orf saw Steve Webb, who is playing at Missouri-St. Louis, and Cliff De Groot, who finished his Wildcats’ career with 1,112 points, good for seventh overall. Webb is right behind in eighth place with 1,095 points.
Orf’s sister, Elizabeth, is now a junior at Marquette University. She played in high school at Villa Duchesne.
Orf reached the milestone in the Wildcat’s recent game against Riverview Gardens in the Lindbergh Tournament. He scored 19 points in a 62-42 victory.
“The basket to make it to 1,000 was very delayed,” Orf said. “I had 999 points in the third quarter and my teammates were trying to get me the ball every play. I was eventually fouled and had two free throws and missed them both and had to wait until the fourth quarter for another shot at it.
“We just got scored on and the other team was pressing so our point guard (Casen Lawrence) threw the ball up to me and it was a one on one and I scored and was fouled for an and one. It was a relief because we could go back to playing our game but I enjoyed it a lot.”
Westminster coach Dale Ribble said he’s seen Orf score a lot of points that way.
“He made a driving left-handed layup in transition and was fouled to reach 1,000 points,” Ribble said. “We took a timeout to recognize him. He was excited and happy about scoring 1,000 points.”
The Wildcats honored and recognized “Brennan’s great accomplishment before our home game versus Lutheran South,” Ribble said. The school will present him with a special basketball at the team banquet with the number of points that he finishes with when Westminster’s season is over.
Orf was pleased with to reach the milestone.
“It was exciting hitting the goal because I was in the club with my sister and very few Westminster athletes have done it,” Orf said. “But I would prefer postseason success over this milestone because we have not had it the past few seasons.”
Orf is averaging a team-leading 16.8 points and 8.3 rebounds a game. His role is roughly the same as it was last year. Orf likes to post up hard, read the double team, and pass out of score.
“I think I have played pretty well this year,” Orf said. “I have taken more shots than last year but we have a very balanced team this year where everyone can score. We have a young team so in the beginning of the year I had to do the majority of the scoring. However, coming down the back half of the season, more players are getting comfortable and it is very fun to be apart of so I have been getting them involved more and more every game.
“I do well rebounding the ball and finishing through contact. Coach Ribble told me last year that I will get fouled a lot that season and they will not call it so I have to be very patient and strong with the ball. For the most part, I feel like I find open teammates from passing out of the post with double teams. (I) Could always improve on that and will need to going into playoffs and seeing conference opponents for the second or third time this year.”
Ribble likes how Orf goes about his business.
“He has played very well this year and the three years he has started for us,” Orf said. “Brennan is a complete player. He is a good scorer, excellent rebounder, and outstanding passer. He is a great teammate, fierce competitor, and humble leader. He gives great effort all the time.
“He has improved each year and has been a hard worker to improve all aspects of his game. We love coaching Brennan. He is a team captain and is an outstanding servant leader. He leads with wisdom and action. His teammates listen and respect Brennan for who he is and what he does on and off the court.”
Orf likes playing for Ribble.
“My relationship with my coach is pretty good especially since he came to Westminster the year I also starting coming here,” Orf said. “So my senior class is the first class he has been all the way through so I think that is pretty special and he trusts me with the ball and my decisions. I do enjoy playing for him because he challenges us to become the best player and person we can possibly be.
“He has worked with me with being smart with the ball and reading defenses better. When I catch on the post he has helped my decision making with where the ball needs to go or which way I should go as well. He has also helped with me being stronger around the rim and also catching the basketball and ‘chin it.’ ”
Orf will go on to play in college but it won’t be for basketball.
“I am going to play baseball at SIUE (Southern Illinois University Edwardsville) because I like the staff they have there and also I really like the campus a ton,” Orf said. “This was the school for me because coach (Sean) Lyons showed that he really cared about me and it felt like a true family there.”
But first there is postseason basketball once the regular season ends. The Wildcats are in the Class 4 District 4 tournament with Pacific, Priory, Summit, St. Francis Borgia, and Washington.
“I think if we continue to improve every day in practice then we have a good shot at winning the conference (Metro League) and being competitive in the postseason,” Orf said. “We are currently on a good win streak and it seems for the most part we have gotten better every game and the younger players are looking more confident in their abilities.”
Ribble is looking for Orf to continue to lead his team.
“He has had a great high school basketball career here at Westminster,” Ribble said. “He is an excellent student and a fine young man. He pursues excellence in everything he does. Brennan has been a great ambassador for our basketball program and Westminster. He has a bright future.”