For The Tribune
Trinity Lutheran advanced to the fifth-place game of the Johnson Memorial Hospital Sports Plus Inc. Holiday Classic by defeating Medora 56-40 on Monday night.
Both the Hornets and Cougars were sent to the loser’s bracket when Edinburgh topped Medora 85-52, and Indianapolis Manual defeated Trinity 77-60 Monday afternoon.
The Cougars broke a 2-2 tie against the Hornets when they jumped on top 10-4 on Jacob Rowe’s 3-point basket after three minutes. After the teams battled on even terms the next three minutes, Chad Stuckwisch hit a 3-pointer, and Dylan Maschino and Bobby Tabeling added baskets for a 7-0 rally and a 21-9 lead.
“We did a nice job at the beginning,” Cougars coach Aaron Rudzinski said. “The first quarter set the tone.”
The Hornets closed the gap to 23-17 following a basket by Tony Norklun early in the second period.
Trinity came back with a layup by Daniel Horton and a 3-pointer by Stuckwisch to stretch its lead to 28-17, and the Cougars were on top 38-20 at the half as they shot 16 for 22 from the floor in the first half.
Trinity held a 41-25 lead midway through the third quarter before Rowe and Keegan Rebber scored baskets to give the Cougars their biggest lead of the night at 45-25.
Chase Booker drilled a 3-pointer, and Kam Flynn followed with a jump shot as Medora closed the quarter on a 5-0 run to make the score 45-30 after three.
Medora couldn’t get any closer than 12 points in the fourth period.
Rudzinski said he was pleased with the balanced scoring as Horton topped the Cougars with 15 points, while Keegan Rebber, Rowe and Dylan Maschino scored 9 points each, and Stuckwisch finished with 8.
Rudzinski said his team needs to play sharper on both ends of the floor today against Jac-Cen-Del.
“We’ve got to get more focused,” he said. “We had too many silly errors.”
Booker topped Medora with 13 points and Flynn scored 10.
Medora (2-7) will play South Decatur at 2 p.m. for seventh place.
Lancers top Hornets
Medora struggled from the start by missing its first nine shots from the floor and committed four turnovers, and that enabled Edinburgh to take an 11-0 lead.The Hornets finally scored when Mike Jones rebounded a teammates’ missed shot and scored with 1:25 left in the first period.
“We talk about working the ball every week in practice,” Medora coach Michael Leitzman said. “When teams zone you they want you to stand still around the perimeter and take deep shots, and we played right into their hands.
“We didn’t start moving the basketball, and cutting until the second quarter, and by that time we were already down 15 points. Sometimes we’re just not ready to play, and tonight we weren’t ready to play. That’s on our seniors; seniors have to be leaders every night and be ready to play. Give credit to Edinburgh. They were ready to play.”
The Lancers held a 17-2 lead after one quarter and held a 31-20 advantage at the half.
“We got it down to 11 at halftime, and our goal coming out at halftime was the first four minutes to get it down to seven or less,” Leitzman said.
The Lancers were leading 33-21 early in the third when Brandon Moore hit a 3-point basket, and Jalen Beesley followed with a 3-point play to make it a 33-27 game.
“At 6:36 we had it down to six points and then we gave up offensive rebounds, an easy 3-pointer, had a couple bad turnovers, and they piled it right back on us, and we weren’t able to dig ourselves out of that hole again.”
The Lancers outscored Medora 24-18 in the third to extend their lead to 55-38 going into the fourth period.
Edinburgh then scored the first seven points of the fourth to go on top 62-38.
Beesley topped the Hornets in scoring with 12 points, and Chase Booker was high rebounder for the Hornets with eight.
“We showed signs of life in the second and third quarters, and if we can’t do that for four quarters we’re not going to be a very good team,” Leitzman said.
Redskins top Cougars
Manual’s Couvesier McCauley served notice early that he was going to be a handful for the Cougars to try and handle.He finished with 42 points on 17 2-point baskets, a 3-pointer, and 5 for 6 at the line.
“We really didn’t have an answer for (McCauley),” Rudzinski said. “He had a great game. We didn’t have anybody that could step up and stop him.”
McCauley, a 6-foot-4 junior, scored 11 points in the first period to help the Redskins to a 17-8 lead.
“It took us a few minutes to realize that we could play with this team,” Rudzinski said. “Once we kind of got that mental block out of our heads we were able to come back and made a nice run, and in the second quarter were able to take the lead.”
Manual was leading 23-14 two minutes into the second period when the Cougars went on a 15-2 run to take a 29-25 lead on a layup by Stuckwisch. Rebber had seven points, and Rowe scored five during the rally.
The game was tied at 33 at the half before the Redskins moved on top 40-36.
A 3-pointer by Rowe cut Manual’s lead to 47-45 but Manual scored the final six points of the quarter to lead 53-45 going into the fourth.
“In the third quarter we had a chance to pull ahead with some free throws, but did not do that,” Rudzinski said.
Manuel opened the quarter on a 6-2 run to increase its lead to 59-47 and the closest the Cougars could get after that was 10 points.
“Unfortunately, we were not able to make enough shots down the stretch,” Rudzinski said as Trinity made only 3 of 12 from the floor in the fourth period when it scored 15 points. He said missed free throws also hurt his team as the Cougars finished with 14 of 22.
“They had a stretch where they were scoring and we didn’t, and we got a little more desperate and it opened things up for them.”
Horton topped Trinity (4-4) with 19 points and Rebber scored 10.