By Cara L. Dempski
HAMMOND — It might not have been a big win to propel the Mounders into their holiday break with some momentum, but that does not mean coach Mike Kessler is displeased with his team.
“St. Croix Central hit some shots early to get out to a lead,” he said the morning after Elk Mound’s 47-36 loss in Hammond to the Panthers Thursday, December 21. “After we quieted that storm, our kids battled hard and played even.”
He said he was proud of how hard his team rose to the challenge of being down early in the game, and hopes to build on that mentality going forward.
The Mounders trailed 29-17 at the end of the first half, but minimized the Panthers’ scoring opportunities while keeping pace with the home team in the final 18 minutes to outscore Central 19-18.
Senior Blake Rosenthal was chief among Elk Mound’s offense against the Panthers, scoring 10 points to lead the team. Brandon Redwine contributed seven points, Ben Lambele put up six, Ryan Mohr scored five, Brett Lew tacked up four points, Jake Mentzel hit a single outside shot for three, and Logan Bergh went one for two from the line.
The non-conference contest’s highest score belonged to Panther Peyton Nogal, who picked up 20.
Elk Mound will play a non-conference matchup at Gale-Ettrick-Trempealeau December 29 before swinging back into Dunn-St. Croix action January 5 against Elmwood/Plum City. The Mounders will face Bloomer at home January 8, and then host Spring Valley January 11.
ELK MOUND 36, ST. CROIX CENTRAL 47
Elk Mound…………………………17 19 — 36
St. Croix Central…………………29 18 — 47
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-T)
Elk Mound (12-9-15-36) — R. Mohr 1-2-1-5, B. Rosenthal 4-2-2-10, B. Redwine 2-3-1-7, B. Lambele 3-0-4-6, D. Black 0-0-3-0, B. Lew 1-1-3-4, L. Bergh 0-1-0-1, J. Mentzel 1-0-0-3, M. Kinblom 0-0-1-0.
St. Croix Central (15-11-12-47) — A. Kopacz 4-1-0-11, P. Nogal 6-5-1-20, C. Nelson 0-0-4-0, W. Soderberg 1-5-2-7, M. Steinmetz 1-0-1-2, J. Freyholtz 0-0-1-0, Z. Jourdeans 2-0-2-5, G. Hinrichsen 0-0-1-0, N. Weber 1-0-0-2.
EM — B. Lew 1, J. Mentzel 1; SCC — A. Kopacz 2, P. Nogal 3, W. Soderberg 1, Z. Jourdeans 1.