By Cara L. Dempski
GLENWOOD CITY — No one can say the Colfax boys’ head basketball coach did not warn his team about the skills of the Hilltopper boys’ squad.
“I told the kids coming in, because we watched three tapes of Glenwood City, they’re a much better team than their 1-9 record,” Garrett Maas said.
The lack of conference wins aside, the Hilltoppers proved a far superior team to the Vikings in their January 12 showdown in Glenwood City when they clobbered the Colfax squad 74-61 after taking a 21-point lead into halftime and holding off several Vikings’ rallies in the second half.
Ironically, it was Glenwood City’s first win over a Dunn-St. Croix foe besides Boyceville since the Toppers beat Colfax 56-46 at home back on February 17, 2015.
The Vikings held the game lead for only one minute, after putting up a three-point shot from deep in the backcourt for a 3-2 advantage. After that, the Hilltoppers pushed out to a 9-3 lead and spent the rest of the first half building a 21-point lead for a score of 40-19 when the teams broke for the half.
The Toppers’ outstanding first-half run which featured a number of good looks was spearheaded by sophomore Dillon Hierlmeier who netted 19 of his game-high 25 points in the opening 18 minutes of play which included all three of Glenwood City’s triples. Tanner Davis added eight points, Croes connected on two hoops and a free throw while Pete Hill, Hadin DeSmith, Quinn Taylor and Riley Schutz each added a field goal.
Glenwood City led by 26 with 3:32 left to play in the first half, but Marcus Reisdorf was fouled on a successful three-point attempt and then made two of his three charity buckets to narrow the gap to 21.
Colfax took a while to find its footing in the second half, and the Hilltoppers maintained a substantial lead until the last nine minutes of the game, when the Vikings started pressing harder defensively and creating turnovers. Additionally, the Hilltoppers started chalking up fouls and sent Colfax to the line for 17 different charity shots.
The Toppers had 17 free throws themselves in the final half, sinking 10 of them. Davis came through with another four buckets in the second half and DeSmith netted another six points while Hierlmeier sank four of five foul shots and Schutz went four-for-six at the line.
In the end, though, the Hilltoppers ground down the Viking offense and managed to pull back out to a 13-point lead before the last time trickled away on their victory.
Hierlmeier’s 25-point performance came via a trio of three-pointers, four of five free throw attempts, and six field goals. Tanner Davis reeled in 16 points in the game on eight two-point baskets and junior Riley Schutz put together eight points in the second half after sinking only one field goal in the first for a total 10 game points.
Hadin DeSmith hit four field goals for eight points, Pete Hill nailed seven, Allen Croes picked up five points before fouling out with 5:11 left to play. Quinn Taylor was good for a field goal and free throw to tack three points onto the scoreboard.
Colfax’s Jacob Larson took home the high score for the Vikings with 20 points.
COLFAX 61, GLENWOOD CITY 74
Colfax…………………………….19 42 — 61
Glenwood City………………..40 34 — 74
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-T)
Colfax (18-13-20-61) B. Thompson 1-0-2-5, A. Davis 4-2-5-13, J. Larson 6-8-3-20, T. Teige 0-1-1-4, G. Scharlau 2-1-5-8, Mat. Reisdorf 3-1-1-7, A. Pretasky 0-0-1-0, Mar. Reisdorf 1-0-2-2, E. Hydukovich 1-0-0-2.
Glenwood City (27-11-20-74) D. Hierlmeier 6-3-2-25, P. Hill 3-1-4-7, H. DeSmith 4-0-1-8, Q. Taylor 1-1-3-3, R. Schutz 3-4-4-10, T. Davis 8-1-1-16, A. Croes 2-1-5-5.
THREE-POINTERS C — B. Thompson 1, A. Davis 1, T. Teige 1, G. Scharlau 1; GC — D. Hierlmeier 3.