Senior Will Cummins, is an all-around high school athlete. Sports are his life. So, he had no trouble coming up with the favorite moment in his career. He chose the time he scored 29 career-high points in the basketball game against Hamlin. And, it just happened to be his birthday. “That was definitely my highlight,” he said and beamed at the recollection.
Cummins helped lead the basketball team during the 2020-2021 season. Although he and the Dawgs started out a little slow, they came around and put together a solid season. “That was all due to Coach (Logan Diede),” Will explained. “He just wanted us to have fun and let us play together more. When we did that, the chemistry came, and we started playing really well.” Milbank went to the SoDak 16 round of play for the second straight season, but fell short of making it to the state tournament.
Will was named to the All-Northeast Conference third team. He finished his high school career by making 130 three-pointers, which tied for second place all-time in the Milbank Bulldogs’ record book. He is tied with Mike Paulson and behind Jonny Ash at 173.
Will began playing basketball in third grade with the traveling boys basketball program. Fellow seniors and teammates this season, Mason Riley and Tanner Mertens, were also part of that team, and their dads served as coaches.
Will also grew up watching his older brother, Brandon, playing a lot of basketball. The more time he spent at the gym and around the game, the more it sparked his interest. When it was time for his age group to start, he was all in. He joined the varsity team as a freshman.
He also credits his grandmother Rose Pauli for being a big influence on his high school basketball career. “She always encourages me to do better,” he says, “to do the best I can, to be a good teammate, and a leader.” He shyly admits she also was known for getting after him a few times.
He again emphasizes the importance team chemistry played in the success of the Bulldogs for the past two seasons. “We had team meals before most of our games, and we seemed to bond more and come together as a family.”
Will was also an integral part of the football team last fall and has been a member of the track team. He also enjoys working with his grandpa at the family farm, hanging out with friends, eating wings, driving around while listening to country music, and playing video game tournaments.
Will is the son of Adam and Jessica Cummins. He plans to attend Lake Area Technical College to major in ag business. In the future, he sees himself selling seed or jumping into farming. He says, “I would like to live in this area when I graduate.”