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Twenty-three former players took part in the first Somerset basketball alumni game on Saturday. Also joining in the festivities were three former Spartan coaches, John Walsh, Mike Ballard and Eric Olson.
Twenty-three former players took part in the first Somerset basketball alumni game on Saturday. Also joining in the festivities were three former Spartan coaches, John Walsh, Mike Ballard and Eric Olson.

Somerset boys basketball knocked from undefeated ranks

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sports New Richmond, 54017

New Richmond Wisconsin 127 South Knowles Avenue 54017

The first test for the Somerset boys basketball team in the Middle Border Conference title chase didn’t go as planned.

The Spartans went to Prescott last Friday in a clash of two of the teams expected to be top competitors for the 2013-14 MBC title. The Spartans couldn’t match the firepower of the prolific Cardinals, losing 57-45.

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Somerset got 19 points from senior guard Jack Emmert, but only two other Spartans scored more than three points. Gaelin Elmore finished with eight points and Heaven Hunt with six points.

Somerset coach Brent Larson said the team needs to get the ball to Elmore more frequently in the post area for the offense to be more successful.

“Gaelin’s such a hard matchup. I don’t think there’s anybody (in the conference) who can guard him in the post one-on-one,” Larson said.

Prescott played a zone defense the entire game, packing its defense into the lane to prevent the ball from reaching Elmore’s hands.

Elmore led the Spartans with eight rebounds in the game, but the team totaled just 16 rebounds in the loss.

For three quarters, the Spartans were the equal of Prescott, with the Cards holding a 41-39 lead entering the fourth quarter. Prescott’s Clay Seifert gave the Spartans problems all night and he was the deciding factor when Prescott pulled away in the fourth quarter.

With Seifert and Michael Brookshaw at the front of Prescott’s defensive pressure, the Cards forced Somerset into several costly turnovers. The Spartans tried to make this a game of limited possessions, but by turning the ball over 14 times, the Spartans gave up the ball without a shot on one-quarter of their possessions. Eight of the turnovers came in the second half.

Larson said the turnovers and the Spartans’ limited effectiveness on defense was a combination that led to the loss. Prescott was able to hit 54 percent of its shots in the game.

“We didn’t defend very well,” Larson said. “We didn’t really deserve to win, the way we played.”

Larson said all of the problems that stood out in the loss are correctable and they will be areas of emphasis over the holiday break.

The Spartans will also be in a tournament over this year’s break. The Spartans will be part of a tournament in Glenwood City this Friday and Saturday. The Spartans are scheduled to face a successful St. Croix Falls team (4-1) on Friday at 2 p.m. On Saturday the Spartans will face the host Hilltoppers in an 8 p.m. start. 

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