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PIERCE COUNTY BOYS BASKETBALL ROUND-UP: Ellsworth avoids trap, tops Osceola

It would only be human nature for the Ellsworth High School boys basketball team to overlook their rescheduled game vs. Osceola Thursday night in Ellsworth ahead of the anticipated first-place showdown with Prescott next Tuesday.

The dreaded "trap game."

But the Panthers avoided Osceola's trap and topped the Chieftains 51-45 to stay a game out of first place in the Middle Border Conference. The Panthers are 9-2 and Prescott is 10-1.

Fueled by a 20-point, 10-rebound night from Kyle Murphy, Ellsworth pieced together its fourth straight win. Chrystian Kulow facilitated the Panthers’ offense with five assists to go with 11 points. Will Huppert chipped in with nine points and five boards as the team jumped out to a 27-14 halftime lead.

Ellsworth (10-5 overall, 9-2 MBC) looks for its third win this week on the road Friday against St. Croix Falls.

In other boys' basketball games played by Pierce County schools, both Elmwood and Spring Valley, like Ellsworth, played in resacheduled contests.

Elmwood was unable to win its second contest in a row as they lost 56-50 to St. Croix Central in Hammond. The Raiders, (2-16 overall, 1-11 in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference) led at halftime 24-22 before Central outscored them 20-10 in the third quarter. EHS had three players in double figures led by Levi Wolf's 14 points.

Spring Valley (11-5 overall, 8-5 in the D-SC)  dropped its second straight ballgame as they fell 56-44 to Colfax on the road.  The Cardinals led early on but the Vikings outscored them 17-5 in the second quarter and held the Cardinals to just seven fourth quarter points. Zac Webster scored 28 points for SV but no one else had more than six points. 

Spring Valley and Elmwood will clash in a regularly scheduled ballgame Friday evening in Spring Valley. Plum City is at No. 5 ranked Elk Mound.