It has been a season of tightly-contested games for the Boone Central/Newman Grove boys, and the 2017 Mid-State tourney was no exception. Unfortunately for the Cardinals, these contests turned out to be heartbreakers.
“We didn’t execute the way we wanted on some things. Both games were disappointing, since they were teams we had previously beaten,” commented Coach Justin Harris. “Hopefully it will open our eyes on things we need to improve on prior to districts.”
The initial disappointment came Tuesday, Jan. 31, with a 54-49 overtime loss to the Pierce Bluejays.
BC/NG turned around a slow start with a 14-3 burst in the second quarter, taking a 23-17 halftime lead. Pierce (9-9) responded with a 21-point third period, tieing the contest, then outscored the Cardinals 12-7 in overtime after the teams battled to a regulation stalemate.
Both teams were hot from long range, Boone Central/Newman Grove hitting 8-of-16 3-point field goals and Pierce 8-of-19, but the Bluejays outscored BC/NG by seven points at the foul line (15-8). The Cardinals scored 18 points in the painted area and 10 second-chance points, while outrebounding Pierce 30-18. The Bluejays countered with nine steals and forced 16 BC/NG turnovers.
Derek Stuhr paced the Cardinals with 13 points, 10 rebounds and three assists.
Boone Central/Newman Grove (10-8) could never seem to find a consistent rhythm in Friday’s consolation round and dropped a 64-60 decision to Guardian Angels CC (8-11).
GACC used an efficient offensive attack and rebounded evenly with the Cardinals despite giving up a fair amount of height. The Bluejays led for much of the contest, several times by double figures in the second and third periods, and held a 46-36 advantage going into the final eight minutes. BC/NG clawed back in that fourth quarter, and with GACC struggling at the foul line, closed to within two points late before a turnover and two final Jay free throws ended the rally.
BC/NG scored 32 points in the paint, but GACC outrebounded the Cards 31-28 and matched them in second-chance points. The Bluejays scored 14 points off 15 BC/NG turnovers. Jessie Sullivan led Cardinal scoring with 18 points. Stuhr added 11 and Carter Henry 10.
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