Basketball recaps: Prescott boys claim 50th consecutive MBC win
The Prescott boys basketball team was the only Pierce County squad that's game was not postponed due to inclement weather on Thursday, Jan. 11.
With their game still on, the Cardinals traveled to St. Croix Central where they picked up their 50th consecutive Middle Border Conference victory with a 67-53 win over the Panthers.
The Cardinals continued their successes on Friday, Jan. 12 against River Falls, and claimed a 57-50 win over the Division 2 Wildcats.
With the two wins, the Cardinals are now 9-1 overall and 5-0 in Middle Border Conference play, and have gained statewide attention throughout the season. Prescott was ranked No. 9 in the state rankings after week seven of the 2017-18 season.
Peter Brookshaw led all scorers with 21 points in Friday night's game, and River Falls was led in scoring by Jaxon Knotek who finished with 15 points.
Parker Nielsen and Brian Tayson also reached the double-digit scoring mark with Brookshaw; Nielsen recorded 13 points while Tayson finished with 12 of his own. Joe Roosen added six points, and Westy Bartsch recorded the Cardinals' final five points.
The No. 1 MBC team faces back-to-back games again on Jan. 19 and 20 against Baldwin-Woodville (4-7, 1-4) and their nonconference rivals, Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau (6-3, 4-1).
Ellsworth girls basketball
The 4-8 Ellsworth Panthers battled against the top MBC girls basketball team, the St. Croix Central Panthers, on Friday, Jan. 12. Ellsworth dropped their sixth conference loss of the season, but were pleased with how they fought against the 10-3 SCC team.
SCC's twin towers of Claire Frankiewicz and Mia Krogseng proved too strong for the visiting Panthers in Friday night's game. The inside duo out-scored Ellsworth alone in the first half (23-21), and led their team to a 37-21 halftime advantage. Autumn Earney kept Ellsworth in the game with nine of her 16 points coming in the opening half.
According to Ellsworth's head coach Jason Janke, Caitlin Dahl sparked the purple Panthers early in the game with a basket and strong defense. Janke also mentioned Nadia Sigler who drove to the basket with just under four minutes to play in the first half to get the Panthers within six before SCC closed the half on a 10-0 run.
Janke told the Herald that the second half was a good MBC battle, but that Ellsworth could not find an answer on the boards for the size of Krogseng and Frankiewicz.
Kaitlyn Nugent scored 10 of her 14 points in the second half to help keep things interesting, and Olivia Lynner had all seven of her points late as well.
"We fell into a slow start again tonight and never fully recovered," Janke said. "I think our girls were a little surprised to be right in the game for about 85 percent of the first half. We fought very hard on the defensive end and just struggled to rebound effectively, and that was really the difference."
SCC went very few possessions with only one shot attempt against the Panthers. "You just can't give a good team like them more opportunities, and we couldn't contain their girls in the paint," Janke said.
Ellsworth was led defensively by Emma Swanson, Sigler and Dahl who all fought very hard for rebounds against SCC's bigs. Janke said Nugent is also learning a great deal on the defensive end.
Offensively, Janke was happy to see his team attacking the basket. "Our kids attacked the basket about as well as we have all year, so that was a positive as well," Janke said. "Our staff is pleased with the progress our girls are making, and we look forward to making a second run through our schedule starting next week.
"It'll be a great test."
Scoring for Ellsworth: Earney 16, Nugent 14, Lynner 7, Swanson 5, Dahl 4, Aly Reuvers 3, Sigler 2.
Scoring for SCC: Krogseng 20, Frankewicz 17, Kalli Cress 11, Abby Edelman 6, Mckenna Johnson 5, Claire Moll 3, Abby Wilder 2.
Ellsworth continues its season at home on Friday, Jan. 19 against Baldwin-Woodville (7-6, 3-4). SCC heads to Osceola on Thursday, Jan. 18.
EPC boys basketball
The Wolves ended their two-game losing streak on Saturday, Jan. 13 with a defeat over the Alma/Pepin Eagles. EPC racked up 65 points to AP's 33, and proved to have more scoring options than just Luke Baier.
EPC finished with four players in double figures, and were led in scoring by junior Tyler Maxwell who had 15 points. Baier recorded 14, Zack Phillips created 13 points, and Jackson Glampe chipped in with 12 points of his own.
The Eagles were led in scoring by Thomas Milton and Ryan Mikelson who each finished with seven points.
The Wolves also cut down on the number of turnovers committed, and only turned the ball over 16 times against the Eagles, which was a 10-turnover improvement compared to their previous game against the Elk Mound Mounders. EPC forced 23 AP turnovers.
With the win, EPC is now 5-5 on the season, and the Wolves will continue to try and better their record on Friday, Jan. 20 when they face the Glenwood City Hilltoppers (5-6, 2-2) at the Target Center in Minneapolis at 1 p.m.
Scoring for the Wolves: Maxwell 15; Baier 14; Phillips 13; Glampe 12; Jordan Brunner, Nic Forster 4.