Vikings defend off Bulldogs in fourth quarter battle

By Kelsie Hoitomt

BOYCEVILLE – It was a close bout at home last Thursday night as the Boyceville boys basketball team hosted the Colfax Vikings and lost 24-20.

The Bulldogs are now 3-8 in the Dunn-St.Croix Conference and the Vikings are still ranked number two with a 9-2 record behind the undefeated Mounders.

This was the lowest scoring game both teams have played in all year with the scores finally going into the 20’s in the fourth quarter.

Needless to say it was a game of passing, dribbling and more passing as both teams tried to execute the right play that would bring the ball to the net.

The Bulldogs shaved over a minute off the clock during one play in the third quarter alone by just passing the ball around the arc before a three point shot was drained by Brady Schutts.

“I didn’t feel running back and forth exchanging shots was our best way to compete and if the ball was in our hands they couldn’t score. Other than the final outcome, I was very proud of the boys to stay with the game plan even though they had some scoring opportunities,” said coach Jay Lagerstrom.

The Bulldogs tried their hardest, but the Vikings still edged a slight lead throughout the entire game with it being 4-0 after the first quarter, 15-6 at the half and then 18-14 after the third.

The Bulldogs finally tied the game in the fourth quarter at 19-19 but fouls called on the team resulted in the Vikings getting the lead and the win.

The Vikings were successful with seven out of 11 free throws, six of which were scored in the final minutes of the game. The Bulldogs made five out of their nine attempts.

“Colfax is a very good team and they found a way to win at the end like great teams do. Our boys passed the ball real well and we played great defense as Colfax was not stalling and the boys played strong and physical on defense and controlled the boards even though we gave up a lot of size. Again I was proud of the boys for executing a game plan that well,” said Lagerstrom.

Leading the game in points for the Bulldogs was Schutts with nine points from one deuce, one triple in the third quarter and four free throws.

Also scoring for the team were Jordan Kuhn with six points from two triples, Mitch Leach with a deuce and a free throw and Michael Lagerstrom had two points.

“It was an exciting game at the end and it proved to the boys that we have the ability to play with the top tier teams and we will use this game as a springboard for hopefully a strong finish to the regular season and playoff run,” shared Lagerstrom.

The Bulldogs play this Friday night at home against the Elmwood Raiders at 7:30 p.m.