University of Louisville senior Stephan Van Treese has stepped up in recent weeks.
The 6-foot-9 center from Indianapolis has played his role of rebounding and hustling for the Cardinals and coach Rick Pitino said he's become a "big X-factor" for U of L.
Van Treese has pulled down 71 rebounds over the last 11 games, including 39 on the offensive end of the floor. He had a career-high 13 rebounds with six points and two steals during a stellar Senior Day effort in an 81-48 victory over Connecticut on Saturday.
"I'm just doing what coach Pitino wants me to do and what this team needs me to do," Van Treese said. "I'll do whatever I can to help us win."
The Cardinals are 9-2 during the 11-game stretch where Van Treese has played better and are playing so much better on both ends.
Van Treese is now averaging 2.9 points and 5.3 rebounds in a career-high 20.9 minutes a game. He also has 27 steals and 26 blocked shots.
"We need him to play exactly the way he played," Pitino said after Saturday's win. "We need him because he's a legitimate player that helps us win the game, so now we fully expect him to play that way every game."
With the 13 rebounds, Van Treese said he was trying for 15 but was happy with his performance against the Huskies.
"Again, I just try to help the team win," he said. "I don't mind if I don't score a point, I'm just trying to get every rebound."
With 120 career games under his belt, Van Treese said he's ready for the Cardinals to make another run. He's a fifth-year senior and has 262 career points and 413 career rebounds, with 206 of those boards on the offensive end.
"I've had a lot of good memories," he said. "Obviously, the national championship and coming back against Marquette was awesome but (Saturday) was special. I didn't expect it but it was just one of those nights where I got all the rebounds."