Friday, June 22, 2018
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Swede boys struggle to score in overtime loss to Lexington

Two free throws lift Minutemen.

It took Gothenburg’s boys almost six minutes to make a basket at the beginning of the Swedes’ home opener with Lexington Saturday night.

And when the game came down to a four-minute overtime, Gothenburg couldn’t get the ball in the bucket, falling to the Minutemen 40-38.

“That’s going to be our season,” said Swede coach Kent Koehn. “We’re not going to score 60 or 70 points a game.”

Lexington was long and quick, Koehn said, offering a variety of defenses in the first half.

Gothenburg trailed 8-2 with only a pair of free throws and 2:23 on the clock in the first quarter.

Sophomore Korey Ahlenstorf hit the first basket in the next possession to help the Swede effort but Gothenburg closed out the period down 10-4.

“We had a tough time getting going,” Koehn said.

Gothenburg finally started scoring in the second quarter as Landen Haake made seven of his 19 points in the period.

Lexington held a 19-15 lead at halftime.

“In the first half, Lexington showed us a couple of zone defenses and some man-to-man,” Koehn said. “At halftime we talked about penetrating that zone to get better shots.”

The Swedes continued to struggle with scoring in the third period, heading into the final stanza trailing 30-23.

Then things began to go right.

A three-pointer by Haake with five minutes to play put Gothenburg up 33-32. The senior followed with another long bomb to give the Swedes a 36-32 advantage.

“It came down to decision making by inexperienced players down the stretch,” Koehn said. “I preach about being disciplined at both ends of the floor. Experience make all the difference in the world in pressure situations.”

Koehn said the Swedes put up a couple of unnecessary shots in the waning seconds of the game and Lexington capitalized.

“They knew who we were trying to get the ball to and they took that away,” Koehn said.

With 10 seconds left, Lexington’s R.J. Seberger hit a pair of free throws to send the game into overtime.

Neither team made a field goal in the extra period but Andrew Rios made two free throws and that was all that was needed.

“It’s always the last couple of plays that stick in everyone’s mind but really we had plenty of opportunities to put that game away,” Koehn said.

The Swedes move to 1-1 on the season, traveling to Southern Valley on Thursday and hosting Perkins County Saturday.

“We never seem to play well at Southern Valley,” Koehn said. “And I don’t know what to think of Perkins County but at this point, I’m more concerned with what we’re doing than what our opponent offers.”

Tipoff for the boys game Saturday is set for 5 p.m.