Hot start not enough for Spartans vs. Mustangs
By Josh Staloch
LUXEMBURG – The Spartans faced Little Chute in a North Eastern Conference clash on Tuesday, Jan. 2, completely controlling the game for the first four minutes of play and jumping out to a 6-0 lead before falling behind and eventually losing by a final score of 55-42.
“It’s the same thing that’s been happening to us this season, as the game goes on, we tend to lose focus,” said L-C head coach Logan VanderVelden, whose team now stands at 2-5 in NEC play and 2-7 overall. “The type of defense that we’re trying to play, as the game goes on, we’re not quite getting there to help, not getting into the gaps to stop penetration. It’s just something we’ve got to keep working on.”
The early 6-0 lead wasn’t the only flash of solid basketball shown by the home team on Tuesday.
After the Mustangs got going, the two teams went back and forth with scores and Little Chute drew to within two points of the lead on a three-pointer that cut the Spartans advantage down to 14-12.
Up next, L-C freshman Braydon Duescher helped teammate Josh Parins get free from his defender by setting a picture-perfect screen, stopping the Little Chute defender in his tracks while allowing Parins to get enough room for an open look at a three-pointer to make it 17-12.
Parins finished the night with 10 points to lead L-C’s scoring effort.
But the Mustangs continued to chip away at the home team’s defense, catching up at 21-21 before going on to close the first half ahead of the Spartans 26-21.
Little Chute, now 5-5 overall and 4-3 for fourth place in the NEC, came out with the hot hand to open half number two, jumping out to a 34-24 lead over the opening five minutes to put the Spartans on their heels the rest of the way.
“We can’t play in spurts,” coach VanderVelden said. “We have to put a complete game together. They’re playing hard, it’s just a work in progress at this point. THe start of the game tonight, that’s what we want to do the entire game.”
Wolves slam Hilltoppers
ELKHART LAKE – The Algoma boys kicked off the Elkhart Lake Tournament with a big 52-33 victory over Cambria Friesland on Thursday, Dec. 28, powered by a hot performance from Parker Lischka, who finished the contest with 24 points, eight rebounds, four assists, six steals and a blocked shot.
The Wolves, who outscored the Hilltoppers 29-13 in the second half, also got nine points and two steals from Chase Romdenne as well as nine points and three assists from Braeden Leist.
Algoma defeated by Resorters
ELKHART LAKE – Algoma got outscored 24-12 in the first half of play against Elkhart-Lake/Glenbeulah and couldn’t make up the difference over the championship game’s final 18 minutes as the Resorters held on for a 47-39 victory to win the Elkhart Lake Tournament on Friday, Dec. 29.
Chase Romdenne led the way for the Wolves with 14 points, a steal, three assists and five rebounds while Braeden Leist added six points, four rebounds and a block.