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Tiger boys basketball knocked out of playoffs

The New Richmond Tiger boys basketball team fell to the Ashland Oredockers in Ashland on Feb. 25, in the opening round of the WIAA Division 2 boys basketball playoffs by a final score of 57-36.

Josh Geigle led the Tigers with 16 points, followed by Noah Berger, who had 10 points.

New Richmond started slow in the first quarter, trail­ing 11-2 at the end of the period. The Tigers bounced back to score 11 points in the second quarter, but Ashland added another 15 points to its total, to take a 26-13 lead into halftime.

“We got off to a slow start,” Tigers coach Rick Montreal said. “We had a hard time scoring. We were down 11-2 in the first quarter, but the scoring margin was roughly even for the next two quarters. We put ourselves in a decent position to win.”

In the third quarter, the Tigers outscored the Oredockers for the first time (17-15), but could not make any more of a dent in Ashland’s lead in the fourth, getting outscored 16-6.

Montreal said the final score was a bit misleading because despite the slow start, the scoring between teams was pretty evenly matched in the second and third quarters.

“But they took it to us down the stretch in the fourth quarter, no doubt,” Montreal said.

Thomas Whiting led the Oredockers with 22 points, while teammate Brendan Carter added 13 points.

The Tigers finish the sea­son with a 4-18 overall record and a 3-11 record in the Middle Border Conference. New Richmond picked up wins over Osceola (twice), Hayward and Durand.

“We struggled to win games all year,” Montreal said. “We would show signs of improvement from time to time, especially in practices, but we were never able to get it done during games.”

Montreal blames himself for “the kids not reaching their full potential.”

“I’m disappointed we could never figure things out,” Montreal said. “We never really gelled or had great chemistry. We under­achieved, in my opinion.”

The Tigers will lose five seniors to graduation this year: Connor O’Loughlin, Jason Fern, Josh Emerson, Keilan Mehls and Connor McCann.

Montreal said this year’s team was low on varsity experience on the court, but next year that will be a differ­ent story.

“We’re getting a lot of kids back next year,” Montreal said. “This year barely any­one had varsity experience. It will be a building block next year. We gained valuable minutes played at the varsity level this year. Next year we’ll work harder, be a little smarter and try to improve on things that held us back this year.”

Compiled by Jordan Willi and Sarah Young 

Jordan Willi
Jordan Willi is a reporter for the New Richmond News. Previously, he worked as a sports reporter at the Worthington Daily Globe in Worthington, Minnesota. He also interned at the Hudson Star Observer for two summers and contributed to the Bison Illustrated sports magazine at North Dakota State University.
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