St. Croix Central boys can't finish off Plum CityThe battle between the bottom two teams in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference was close, but the St. Croix Central boys couldn’t finish off Plum City last Thursday.
The battle between the bottom two teams in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference was close, but the St. Croix Central boys couldn’t finish off Plum City last Thursday.
Central had a three-point lead heading into the fourth quarter, but the Plum City took the lead late to win 39-36. The teams are now tied with 1-10 records in the D-SC.
Once Plum City got the lead, the Panthers couldn’t get it back. Plum City hit 9-12 free throws in the fourth quarter to thwart any Panther comeback attempt.
The beacon from this game for the Panthers was freshman post player Doug Cottrell. He scored more than half of the Panthers’ points, finishing with a career-high 19 points.
“We’re really pleased with the effort Doug gives us on a nightly basis,” said Central coach Zach Turpin. “Even when he makes a mistake, he doesn’t get down, he keeps playing hard.”
Turpin said Plum City was allowing the Panthers to get the ball into the paint and Cottrell was the one player who was able to take advantage. The Panther guards had almost no scoring impact, with no guard scoring more than three points.
Leading the guards was senior Brandon Booth, who was seeing his first action in more than two weeks after spraining an ankle. Turpin said Booth was rusty, but he provided some much needed court leadership for the young team.
The spirit of the young team showed last Tuesday when the Panthers took on Somerset, a co-leader in the Middle Border Conference. The final score was 58-31, but Central made this a competitive game well into the second half.
Somerset hit three-pointers on each of its first three possessions to go ahead 9-2 in the first two minutes of the game. The Panthers didn’t back down an inch. Using three pointers from D.J. Holland, Tony Berg and Zach Lewis, the Panthers surprised Somerset with an impressive comeback. By the end of the first quarter the Panthers had momentum, cutting the lead to 17-14. The score was close until Somerset finished the half with a 7-0 run to lead 30-19.
It wasn’t until the fourth quarter that Somerset really stretched out its lead. The Panthers had balanced scoring in the game, led by Jason Matteson with eight points and Connor Lyksett with seven points.
The Panthers resume their schedule this Friday with a home game against Colfax. The Panthers step outside the conference next Tuesday, hosting Prescott from the MBC.