"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)

Wednesday, January 8, 2014

Boys come together again to notch victory

Tigers 50, 'Waska 48
The MACA Tigers look like a different team in the 2014 calendar year. They have recovered in a robust way from their sputtering start.
Coach Mark Torgerson must be pulling the right levers. More importantly, the Tigers are coming together as a well-oiled unit. Their loss streak to start the season seems put behind them, at least for now. We're in mid-winter and lots of hoops lie ahead for fans to enjoy.
Perhaps this season needn't be labeled a rebuilding one. On Tuesday night (1/7), at home, the future most certainly appeared to be now. MACA gained win No. 3 in a row. Success was vs. traditional rival Minnewaska Area. It was hard-earned, coming by the slim margin of two: 50-48.
The young center of the Tigers, Eric Staebler, again put smiles on fans' faces with his play. Sophomore Staebler produced a double-double with 23 points and 18 rebounds.
Noah Grove again made his presence felt with a solid offensive touch, scoring 14 points. Jacob Zosel scored five points followed by Riley Biesterfeld and Andrew Goulet each with four.
Staebler did what centers don't often do, connecting from three-point range. He and Grove each made one long-ranger. MACA was conservative in that department, making two of five tries. In total field goals their numbers were 20 of 42. In freethrows: eight of 14.
Goulet dished out six assists. Grove swatted aside three shots. Zosel made a steal late in the game that was essential in getting the winning margin. Grove and Goulet each had two steals.
MACA overcame a five-point halftime deficit (29-24). The win puts them at 3-8 overall and 1-4 in conference.
Staebler's development as a sophomore has been terrific. His Tuesday double-double was his seventh such feat this season. He's flirting with 20 points as a per-game average, and look for him to snag 13 rebounds on a typical night. Opposing scouts are going to work on this guy, right?
The Tigers are showing they have other weapons such as Grove.
The Tigers' second half advantage was by 26 to 19. 'Waska had a mere six field goals in the second half.
Once MACA seized the momentum, it looked like they actually might erase any suspense. MACA raced out to a decent advantage but couldn't make the game a rout, as 'Waska showed its own weapons like Jayden Beecher who finished with 16 points, Austin Ver Steeg who put in 12 and Matt McIver with ten. Laker Austin Ostrander put in five points on the night, Thor Erickson had three and Riley Thompson two.
Cold three-point shooting by 'Waska appeared to save the Tigers. 'Waska's stats in long-rangers were three of 15 with McIver making two and Beecher the other.
Zosel of the Tigers had that late steal that spelled victory, as not only did it deny 'Waska an offensive opportunity, Zosel went to the freethrow line and made the front end, making the score 50-48 which stood as the final.
All that was left was for Minnewaska to try a "hail Mary" half-court heave: unsucccessful.
Total field goals saw the Lakers make 19 of 57 shots. In freethrows the Lakers were seven of 14.
Ver Steeg collected eight rebounds. McIver and Beecher each had three assists. Ver Steeg had four steals and McIver three. Ostrander went up to block three shots.
'Waska came out of Tuesday with a 4-7 overall record, 2-5 in conference.
Can the Tigers make it four wins in a row? Fans will have another opportunity to enjoy the team at home on Friday, Jan. 10, when the opponent will be Montevideo. And then on Monday, the assignment will be to visit ACGC. 
Hopefully the harsh winter cold of late will abate. Maybe we could enjoy a "balmy" temperature of ten degrees!
Viva Morris Area Chokio Alberta boys basketball!
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

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