Points continue to be elusive for the Boone Central/Newman Grove basketball team, which split a pair of contests against Mid-State Conference foes this past weekend. After notching a home court victory over O’Neill Friday, Saturday’s tough 46-41 loss at Wayne leaves the Cardinal record at 6-4.
BC/NG hosted O’Neill Friday and used a strong finish to defeat the stubborn Eagles 50-35.
The Cardinals mustered just 33 points through three quarters, but maintained a 33-28 lead with tenacious defense. BC/NG took a six-point edge into the final two minutes, then secured the win with a finishing flourish.
“It was good to get back playing on on our home floor. The energy from the crowd gave us an edge,” commented Boone Central/Newman Grove Coach Dan Zoucha. “This was, overall, a pretty good defensive effort.”
Saturday’s road trip was not as kind to the Cardinals. Boone Central/Newman Grove struggled in the first half, falling 10 points behind host Wayne, then fell just short at the end of a second-half rally attempt and dropped a 46-41 conference decision.
“Each of the last few years, playing at Wayne has been a challenge,” Zoucha said. “What we needed to do was make sure we played sound defense and rebounded. Sounds like a broken record, but that’s where we’re at.
“We had minimal turnovers, which was a good thing. However, after five very good possessions in the first quarter, we stopped moving on offense and were down 10 points at halftime.
“We got within six two minutes into the third quarter, but allowed Wayne to go on a 7-0 run and had to continue to battle back from that point.
“We were able to get within 43-41 in the last minute of the game, but couldn’t convert the final opportunities we had,” Zoucha rued. “We struggled at the foul line and were outrebounded 33-27.”
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