Boone Central and Pierce have well-deserved reputations as two of the best defensive basketball programs in Northeast Nebraska.
Friday, the Mid-State Conference rivals took that defensive prowess to the extreme in a 39-22 contest in Albion won by the visiting Bluejays.
In a physical affair that saw chest-to-chest pressure from the opening tip, Pierce used a 10-3 flurry in the third period to break open a tight game. Neither team could get untracked in the first half, but the Bluejays ratcheted up their defense another notch following intermission and allowed the Cardinals just one second-half field goal.
“We came out with a lot of energy and played very hard. We knew this game would be very physical – and it was,” acknowledged Boone Central Coach Dan Zoucha. “The overall effort was great. Our goal was to go ‘toe-to-toe’ with a very good team and I felt we did.
“We played pretty well in the first half. We gave up a few easy baskets and in a tight game, every possession is precious. Our overall defense was something to build on for the rest of the season.
“In the second half, some shots didn’t fall early and we were not able to overcome the deficit from there.”
Shotkoski led the Cards with 14 points. Zoucha had six points, six rebounds and three assists in the contest.
Boone Central, 1-2, hosted Twin River Tuesday night and entertain conference foe Norfolk Catholic Friday in Albion (6:15/8:00 pm).
Complete Details in Print Edition of Albion News.