PRESCOTT - The magic number is two for the Prescott High School basketball team to win its first Middle Border Conference title in school history.
The Cardinals stayed in first place in the MBC standings and knocked back Ellsworth after beating the Panthers 56-48 Tuesday evening in the Coaches vs. Cancer Highway 10 Classic in crowded Prescott High School gymnasium.
Much like the first contest between the two teams a month ago in Ellsworth, PHS grabbed the early lead at 10-2. But Ellsworth came back quickly to take a 13-10 lead of its own thanks to the scoring of Will Huppert. He finished with a game-high 23 points. Only a three-point play for Clay Seifert tied the game at the end of the first quarter.
The game was almost even through the second quarter with PHS holding a slight 26-24 lead at halftime. But Ellsworth played well enough to take a four-point lead 31-27 early in the third quarter. It was from this moment Prescott took control, building as much as a 13 point lead late in the fourth quarter. PHS used tough ball-pressure defense to force turnovers and prevent outside shots by EHS's guards. They also broke down Ellsworth's defense and provided open back-door cuts for guards Mike Brookshaw, Marty Harris and Seifert, who led Prescott in scoring with 21 points while Brookshaw scored 10 points and Harris was one of three players who scored six points for Prescott.
Ellsworth used some outside baskets from Emery Whalen and Chrystian Kulow to cut the home team's lead to six but came no closer.
With Somerset's 58-51 win this evening in New Richmond, both the Spartans and Cardinals sit atop the MBC with 11-1 records whie Ellsworth, 11-6 overall, dropped to 9-3 in the league. PHS improves to 16-3 overall.