By Cara L. Dempski
DURAND — According to the Wisconsin DNRs website, the cougar, also known as a puma, mountain lion or panther, is the largest wildcat on the continent north of Mexico.
Panthers are certainly the largest cats found in this region, and their namesakes from Durand are the largest cats in the Dunn-St. Croix boys’ basketball standings having already secured this season’s conference championship.
That is a trivia tidbit the Boyceville Bulldogs would have done well to heed last Friday when they traveled to Panther territory in Durand and left later that evening after a 72-55 smackdown.
The Dogs trailed 40-27 at halftime before seemingly beefing up their defense in the second half to hold the Durand squad to just 32 points more while putting up another 28 for themselves.
Senior Bryce Boda is credited with Boyceville’s highest individual score after picking up 20 in the game, and Luke Knudtson tacked up another 18. Jayson Gonzales logged 11 points, Cooper Boesl put up four, and Jaden Reisimer completed the total with two points.
The game’s highest score belonged to Panther Brittan Sabelko, who scored 21 against the Bulldogs.
The contest knocked the Dogs to 2-11 in the conference, and 5-15 overall, as the team faces its final week of regular-season play. The Bulldogs were originally scheduled for a February 19 road trip to Luck, but the game was postponed on account of poor weather.
The Boyceville boys host Spring Valley February 22 to complete the Dunn-St. Croix season. They were seeded 12th in their region at the February 17 seeding meetings, and are scheduled to take on the fifth-seeded Beavers at Cumberland February 27 in a regional quarterfinal contest.
The winner of that game will take on the winner of the St. Croix Falls/Cameron game March 2.
BOYCEVILLE 55, DURAND 72
Boyceville………………………….27 28 — 55
Durand……………………………..40 32 — 72
Boyceville— B. Boda 20, J. Reisimer 2, C. Boesl 4, J. Gonzales 11, Lu. Knudtson 18.
Durand — B. Sabelko 21, C. O’Keefe 10, E. Bauer 5, I. Wegner 2, R. Radle 9, T. Tulip 11, I. Whitwam 2, K. Humphrey 12.