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Panthers play their way back into D-SC race

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New Richmond, 54017
New Richmond News
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New Richmond Wisconsin 127 South Knowles Avenue 54017

It was a game the St. Croix Central boys could not afford to lose.

The Panthers faced a pivotal Dunn-St. Croix Conference game on Saturday, facing one of the other main D-SC contenders when Mondovi's boys visited Hammond.

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After a tight first quarter, the Panthers took control of the game by outscoring the Buffaloes 15-2 in the second quarter. From then on the Panthers kept the lead at a comfortable margin, winning 53-44.

A loss to Mondovi would have put the Panthers two games behind in the D-SC race after three games. By beating Mondovi, there is only one undefeated team left in the MBC, that being Glenwood City. Central's boys are now solidly back in the race with a 2-1 conference record.

Two things were instrumental in turning the game in Central's favor: defense and the outside shooting of senior Derek Raebel. The Panthers held Mondovi to two points in the second quarter. Meanwhile, the Panthers were scoring 15 points in the second quarter to build a 28-17 halftime advantage.

Raebel lit up the scoreboard in the first half, ringing up 18 points in the half. He finished with a game-high 20 points.

"He really took the game over in the first half," said Central coach Mike Fern. "We have a lot of people who can do that."

The defense was led by senior post player Cameron Sarnstrom. Mondovi's offense funnels through center B.J. Vetterkind. Sarnstrom and his backup, Tom Redmon, held Vetterkind to 10 points and only two points in the first half.

Fern said that developing will only make the Panthers better. He looks to players like Redmon and Jake Butler to improve to make the bench stronger as the season goes on.

Joining Raebel in double-figure scoring for the Panthers was Tyler Cody with 15 points. The Panthers did an excellent job rebounding, led by Cody with 10 and Raebel and Dustin Meyer with eight apiece.

First win

The Panthers broke into the win column for the first time this season when they won at Plum City last Thursday, 65-46.

This was also a game where the second period was pivotal for the Panthers. Plum City had scored the first nine points of the game, but the Panthers quickly got things under control. After building up a 24-16 lead in the first quarter, the Panthers put the game away by holding Plum City to six points in the second quarter.

Fern said everyone in the Panther lineup is capable of scoring in double figures and this game proved it. The Panthers had five players hit double figures, led by Raebel with 13, Ryan Fedie with 11 and Cody, Meyer and Steve Gulich with 10 each.

This was another game where the Panthers put together a balanced rebounding effort. Raebel led the team with 10 rebounds, Meyer had eight rebounds and Cody and Gulich each had seven rebounds.

This game appeared to allow the Panthers to relax and play their style of ball.

"There have been high expectations, not only from the community but the players," Fern said. "This took a little pressure off. I hope we'll play more relaxed now."

The Panthers have two road games on the upcoming schedule. On Friday the Panthers will play at Elk Mound, their last conference game until January. Next Tuesday the Panthers play their annual non-conference game against Baldwin-Woodville, this time playing at Baldwin.

St. Croix Central 53, Mondovi 44

MONDOVI (44)

(FG-FT-FTA-PTS)

Christianson 2 0-0 5, Isaacson 3 0-0 9, Vetterkind 4 2-2 10, Nelson 3 4-5 10, Wold 2 0-0 4, Lee 2 0-0 4, Larson 1 0-2 2. Totals 17 6-9 44.

ST. CROIX CENTRAL (53)

Butler 0 0-0 0, Cody 6 1-2 15, Fedie 1 2-2 4, Sanders 0 0-0 0, Gulich 2 0-0 4, Meyer 1 0-0 2, Dimler 0 0-0 0, Raebel 6 3-4 20, Sarnstrom 2 0-0 4, Redmon 2 0-0 4. Totals 20 6-8 53.

Mondovi 15 2 12 15 44

St. Croix Central 13 15 16 9 53

Three-point goals -- Christianson, Isaacson 3, Cody 2, Raebel 5. Fouled out -- none. Total fouls -- Mondovi 12, St. Croix Central 8.

St. Croix Central 65, Plum City 48

ST. CROIX CENTRAL (65)

(FG-FT-FTA-PTS)

Butler 0 2-4 2, Cody 4 1-2 10, Fedie 3 5-7 11, Sanders 0 0-0 0, Gulich 5 0-2 10, Meyer 5 0-0 10, Dimler 0 0-2 0, Raebel 4 5-8 13, Sarnstrom 1 3-4 5, Redmon 2 0-0 4. Totals 24 16-29 65.

PLUM CITY (48)

Gansluckner 2 0-0 4, Pelzel 1 0-0 3, Daleiden 1 0-0 3, Fleishauer 2 1-2 7, Heit 1 0-1 2, Beiderman 3 3-4 9, Hanson 5 1-1 11, Glaus 4 0-0 8, Hartung 0 1-2 1. Totals 19 6-10 48.

St. Croix Central 24 12 21 8 65

Plum City 16 6 13 13 48

Three-point goals -- Cody, Pelzel, Daleiden, Fleishauer 2. Fouled out -- none. Total fouls -- St. Croix Central 13, Plum City 25.

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Dave Newman
Dave Newman has been the sports editor at the New Richmond News since 1988. He has covered the action in the Middle Border Conference, Dunn-St. Croix Conference and Big Rivers Conference for nearly 30 years.
(715) 243-7767 x242
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