Ben Vander Plas smiles during a timeout in Ohio University’s 89-65 win over Iona. He posted career-highs of 18 points and 11 rebounds in the game. 
        Ohio University Athletics photo
Ben Vander Plas smiles during a timeout in Ohio University’s 89-65 win over Iona. He posted career-highs of 18 points and 11 rebounds in the game. Ohio University Athletics photo

   After sitting out last season with a medical redshirt, Ben Vander Plas has made a name for himself at Ohio University.

   The 2017 Ripon High School graduate is averaging 10.8 points and 5.1 rebounds off the bench in 22.2 minutes per game, helping the Bobcats start the season 8-4.

   His best game came in an 89-65 win over Iona Nov. 27, when he scored 18 points and pulled down 11 rebounds, both of which are career-highs. It also marked his first career double-double.

   He followed that up with another 18-point performance in a 101-84 home win over Marshall four days later (Dec. 1).

   Vander Plas is the Tigers’ all-time leader in points (1.649), rebounds (1,033), assists (366) and steals (155). He helped guide Ripon to four-straight regional titles and its first state appearance since 2003 during his senior year.

   Vander Plas reflected on the past year and a half at Ohio University, as well as some of his favorite memories while at Ripon when he took some time last week Friday for “Q&A” with The Ripon Commonwealth Press.

   Q. How tough was it to sit out last season and watch your teammates? How did that compare to when you missed the rest of your sophomore season at Ripon with a foot injury?
   A. Being through it already in high school, I kind of knew what was coming; just having to sit on the bench. But ... we were struggling at some points last year, so it was definitely tough thinking that if I was healthy, I would maybe be able to help the team in whatever way possible. So that was kind of a hard part.

Read the full story, which includes information on what team he would love to play, his favorite high school dunk and more, in the Jan. 3, 2019 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.