Dry spell hampers Swedes
Gothenburg’s boys started strong against pre-season ranked Southern Valley Thursday night, frustrating the Eagles’ big man and playing nearly point for point through the first half.
Unbeaten Southern Valley took advantage of a Swede dry spell in the third quarter, though, and went on to beat Gothenburg 49-40.
“I thought we made progress,” coach Roger Koehler said of his team. “Overall, I was pleased with the way we played.”
The Swedes were successful keeping 6-foot-9 Spencer Kucera from being much of a threat.
“Tanner (Borchardt) blocked his first shot and got in his head,” Koehler said.
But Gothenburg didn’t hold back Eagle guard Alex Kaup, who scored 10 of Southern Valley’s 12 points in the first quarter.
Two Kaup shots were long-range three-pointers from 25 feet out or farther.
“Logan (Sheets) is a good defender but he just doesn’t have the length,” Koehler said. “And when the kid is throwing up shots from that far out, not too many teams are going to defend that.”
Gothenburg led 13-12 at the end of the first period and stuck tight with the Eagles through the half.
The Swedes trailed 22-21 until Eagle junior Jeremiah Perkins hit a shot at the buzzer to put Gothenburg down 24-21 at the half.
Borchardt made a short jumper to start the second half about a minute into the third period and Gothenburg didn’t put another point on the board until Blake Ristine scored with 2:12 left in the quarter.
“That’s a lapse of about five minutes,” Koehler said. “That’s generally not going to work for anybody.”
The Swedes had a solid fourth quarter but had to resort to the gamble with fouling.
Southern Valley made 12 of 15 free throws in the final 1:45 of the game.
Borchardt, a sophomore, finished with a double-double scoring 15 points and pulling down 11 rebounds, He also had four blocks in the game.
Senior Logan Koeher added 11 points and nine rebounds and three assists.