"You'll never get ahead if you don't take care of what you have." - Doris Waddell, RIP

A historic building on our U of M-Morris campus - morris mn

A historic building on our U of M-Morris campus - morris mn
The multi-ethnic building was the original home of the music department at UMM. (B.W. photo)

Monday, March 11, 2013

Boys hum through first round of post-season

Hoops: Tigers 62, SJP 36
First-round high school playoff games can have a lopsided look. Not always, of course.
But the Tigers' first-round contest against St. John's Prep on 3/7, fell into the common pattern of a mismatch.
St. John's Prep gamely played the two halves but couldn't keep pace with the smoothly functioning Tigers under coach Mark Torgerson. It was MACA winning in the 62-36 final here at MAHS.
It was win No. 19 on the season for the orange and black. They're seeded No. 3 in Section 6AA-South. They'll take their 19-7 season record into a game tonight (Monday, March 11) that will undoubtedly present more of a challenge. Tonight's foe is New London-Spicer, the No. 2 seed.
MACA fell to the NL-Spicer Wildcats in regular season play, on 2/26 in overtime.
Fans at the local gym enjoyed seeing an array of strengths exhibited by their team in the win over St. John's Prep (SJP). Let's start with Logan Manska who was "in the zone" shooting from three-point range. My, was he ever. He made all five of his tries from three-point land! A crescendo of cheers followed each.
A weapon like this could make the difference tonight. Manska's three-pointers constituted his point total for the night: 15. He made all of the Tigers' 3's, a department where their numbers were five of eleven.
In total field goals, the team's 26-for-49 stats spelled a commanding picture. Freethrows, not so much, as the MACA numbers here were five of 16.
The rangy Austin Dierks certainly had his talents on display. Dierks had a double-double performance. He put in 19 points and collected 16 rebounds. Both stats were game-high.
The Tigers shot with over 50 per cent success - an optimistic sign to be sure going into tonight's 7 p.m. challenge which will be at St. John's. Why on a Monday? My oh my, the weather wasn't fit for man or beast Saturday. First there was rain which became ice. Then, a generous heavy and wet snowfall.
I checked the radio dial and found that apparently at least one prep game was in fact played Saturday, at our U of M-Morris. I certainly would not have recommended any travel for anyone from late Saturday afternoon through the evening. It's only sports. It's not worth taking such risks.
Tonight (Monday, 3/11) is semis night for our Tigers and the Wildcats.
MACA had the outcome sealed vs. SJP at halftime, up 31-14. Cruise control could take over.
Manska and Dierks spearheaded the MACA scoring with their 15 and 19 points respectively. Let's complete the list: Nic Vipond 8, Lincoln Berget 6, Jacob Torgerson 4, Chandler Erickson 4, John Tiernan 3, Marcus Cannon 2 and Beau Keimig 1.
Dierks' 16 rebounds made him the standout in that department. Berget collected seven and Vipond five. Erickson had four assists followed by Torgerson and Dierks each with three. Dierks blocked three shots.
St. John's Prep had a languishing look on the court on Thursday, but they've had their share of wins. They wrapped up their season with a 12-15 record.
R. J. Alpers of SJP had his moments Thursday, making three 3-pointers. Alex Kendall and Alex Abdella each made a '3' also. Alpers was team-high in scoring with 15 points.
St. John's Prep really went to the well in three-pointers. But they only made five of 24 tries. They languished in total field goals with 13 of 51 numbers.
Girls basketball: NL-S 73, Tigers 50
The MACA girls will have to be content with their 17 wins on the season - a very fine total.
Win No. 18 proved elusive. That's because they came up against the New London-Spicer Wildcats on Saturday, March 2, in the Section 6AA-South semis.
Things looked promising halfway through this one. The Tigers owned the lead 29-26 in this game played at St. John's. Could the orange and black hold on against this historically powerful program?
The Wildcats entered the night ranked eighth in state. By night's end, they showed how they had earned that lofty status. Coach Dale Henrich's proud orange and black crew tasted defeat in the 73-50 final.
As the numbers suggest, NL-Spicer owned the second half. Morris Area Chokio Alberta fans might have wanted to close their eyes. Whatever it was that worked for the Tigers in the first half, came to a grinding halt.
Olivia Setterberg finally got warmed up for the Wildcats. She scored all but two of her game-total 19 points in the second half, a half in which the Tigers were outscored 47-21. Setterberg was important but it was Taylor Thunstedt who really starred for the victor. Thunstedt was a terror offensively with her 34 points and nine assists.
Yes, the Wildcats are still coached by Mike Dreier.
(I remember Rick Lucken observing once that Dreier looked like he wore a toupee. Rick faked like he was going to sneak up from behind and pull it off. I haven't seen Mr. Dreier in many years. If he had real hair, it has receded now, like mine. And there's nothing wrong with wearing a toupee of course.)
The Tigers held their own with 3's on March 2. Led as always by Katie Holzheimer - five on this night - the team had a total of six successful 3's. Becca Holland had the other.
The Tigers were 18 of 58 in total field goals and eight of eleven in freethrows.
Holzheimer had the team-best total in points with 17. Beth Holland put in 12 points. Then we have MaKenzie Smith and Becca Holland each with seven points, Kaitlin Vogel with five and Nicole Strobel with two.
Smith grabbed six rebounds and Becca Holland five. Becca dished out three assists. Smith stole the ball three times.
The books are closed on the MACA girls' season with won-lost numbers of 17-10.
Wrestling: Metzger fifth in state
Connor Metzger of the MAHACA crew had a long road with several matches wrestled in the state tournament. All that work and persistence paid off with a fifth place medal finish. Congrats to grappler Metzger!
The 170-pounder began with a 9-4 decision over a Staples-Motley foe, Jordan Heldman. Then came a loss via technical fall, 17-2 at the hands of Nick Wanzek of Sibley.
Having lost, Connor would now have to take that extended road back to success. He had what it took, first beating Zach Gehloff of Waseca in a 5-3 decision. He then fought hard to edge Miles Hammerlund of Delano, 12-11. Then came another loss, 5-0 at the hands of Corben Hansen of Kasson-Mantorville.
Metzger capped off the whole experience in winning style, pinning Bobby Lee of Becker in 3:09, thus garnering fifth. Nice work.
Dillan Johnson also wrestled for MAHACA in state. Dillan started out fine, defeating Christian Wellens of Richfield 16-3 (a major). But the tables were turned in the second round as Johnson lost an 18-3 technical fall to Mason Brownlee of Tri City/Cleveland. Johnson reached the end of the road with an 11-2 major decision loss at the hands of Andy Jackson of South St. Paul.
A medal may have eluded Johnson but he had a terrific section tournament and season as a whole.
Viva Morris Area Hancock Chokio Alberta wrestling!
Now, can we finally get spring?
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

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