By Cara L. Dempski
Elk Mound boys’ basketball coach Mike Kessler has, thus far, been impressed with the contributions from his bench this season.
He named Nathaniel Schreiber, Jake Mentzel and Brandon Redwine as helpful factors at Spring Valley despite the Mounders’ sound defeat by the Cardinals February 13. Rob Bosshart’s flock buzzed past the Mounders 62-48 in the contest.
The Elk Mound squad then headed to Glenwood City February 16 for their second meeting this season with the Hilltoppers. The contest was a fight to the finish, with both teams tied at 56 when regulation ended. The matchup would go to the Hilltoppers, though, after they edged past the Mounders for a 61-59 win last Friday in overtime.
[emember_protected] Kessler attended a seeding meeting February 17, where he learned his team is seeded seventh in the region, and will take on number 10 Fall Creek at home February 27 in their first regional contest.
First, though, the Mounders need to finish this week. The Elk Mound boys’ hosted the Cardinals February 19, and will welcome Mondovi February 22 for the final regular-season contest.
Elk Mound came into this week with a 7-5 conference record, and is 9-11 overall.
Everything seemed good for Elk Mound at the start of the Mounders’ road trip to Spring Valley February 13.
“We came out of the gates hitting shots, and then went cold for an eight-to-ten minute stretch,” Kessler said to open his email about the game. “In that time, Valley went on a 20-0 run, and we could never quite get back into it.”
The Elk Mound coach said he got some great effort out of some of his bench, but it was not enough to get the Mounders back into the game, and the visiting team fell 62-48.
The Mounder boys trailed 30-20 at halftime, and then seemed to keep pace with the Cardinals, scoring another 28 in the face of the home squad’s 32-point effort for the win.
Ben Lambele proved Elk Mound’s highest-scoring player yet again in the game, holding down 15 points of the total. He was joined by Brandon Redwine with nine, Brett Lew with six, Dylan Black and Jake Mentzel with five each, Ryan Mohr with four, and Blake Rosenthal and Nate Lew with two apiece.
The game’s highest score belonged to Spring Valley’s Dylan Bosshart, who nabbed 22 points.
ELK MOUND 48, SPRING VALLEY 62
Elk Mound…………………….20 28 — 48
Spring Valley………………….30 32 — 62
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-T)
Elk Mound (24-1-26-48) — R. Mohr 2-0-3-4, B. Rosenthal 2-0-2-2, B. Redwine 4-1-0-9, D. Curry 0-0-4-0, B. Lambele 9-0-4-15, D. Black 2-0-2-6, B. Lew 2-0-3-6, J. Mentzel 2-0-4-5, N. Schreiber 0-0-4-0, N. Lew 1-0-0-2.
Spring Valley (17-26-7-62) — Z. Williams 2-0-1-4, D. Bosshart 4-14-0-22, T. Kado 4-3-1-11, M. Bauer 1-0-0-3, A. Borgerding 2-5-3-9, L. McMurrin 0-0-1-0, T. Stangl 2-0-0-9, C. Anderson 0-4-1-4.
EM — B. Lambele 3, D. Black 1, B. Lew 2, J. Mentzel 1; SV — M. Bauer 1, T. Stangl 3.
Kessler admitted in his emailed comments following the Mounders’ February 16 road game at Glenwood City that he was having fun during the contest.
“I thought it was a fun game to be a part of,” he began. “Both teams played hard, and gave the people in attendance an enjoyable game to watch.”
The Elk Mound boys played a great game against a group of Hilltoppers bent on picking up a win, tying the score at 56 when the final buzzer sounded to force overtime before falling to the GC boys 61-59, its first loss to the Toppers in seven years.
“I thought the difference in the game was the relentless effort they (Glenwood City) had on the offensive glass,” Kessler noted. “We gave up too many second-chance points to them, and did a poor job of limiting them to one shot each possession.”
The Mounder head coach was pleased to have players like Blake Rosenthal and Ryan Mohr in his arsenal, though, as the Hilltoppers spent much of the night focused on senior Ben Lambele, limiting his opportunities to even touch the ball.
The game was only 5-3 in favor of Glenwood City after five minutes, but both teams appeared to have just gotten warmed up. A two-point bucket off the hands of Riley Schutz gave the home team a four-point edge before the Mounders drew back within two with 12 minutes to go in the opening half.
Brandon Redwine drew a foul off Hilltopper junior Dillon Hierlmeier after picking up two points off his own rebound. He missed the plus one, and settled for a tie at nine points with 10:26 to go in the half.
The Toppers set a somewhat relentless pace as they pushed inside time after time for two, and carried a 32-26 lead into intermission.
Elk Mound got on the board 90 seconds into the second half with a three-point shot courtesy of Dylan Black to make the score 32-29. Glenwood City responded with five more points before the Mounders could score again.
The Mounders knotted things up at 40 points with 11:05 left in regulation on a field goal from Black, and then nabbed the lead on an inside shot from Lambele, and then a field goal at 7:39 to lead 44-40.
The Hilltoppers cut the lead to just two at 7:03, but Rosenthal responded just 30 seconds later with a deep three to expand the game to five points. From there on out, it seemed EM had an answer for everything the Toppers threw out there until GC’s Schutz dropped in a field goal and drew the foul off Black.
The ensuing charity throw missed, leaving the game tied at 56 as the final four seconds ticked away.
The Mounders could grab just three more points in the game, while Glenwood City hit a field goal and three of four free throw attempts for the overtime win.
Rosenthal landed 19 points in the contest, Ryan Mohr scored 15, Lambele was limited to nine, Dylan Curry scored seven, Black had five, and Redwine picked up four.
Schutz was the game’s highest-scoring player, nabbing 28 points.
ELK MOUND 59, GLENWOOD CITY 61
Elk Mound……………………..26 30 3 — 59
Glenwood City………………..32 24 6 — 61
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-T)
Elk Mound (23-3-14-59) — R. Mohr 6-1-3-15, B. Rosenthal 7-0-3-19, B. Redwine 2-0-1-4, D. Curry 3-0-1-7, B. Lambele 3-2-3-9, D. Black 2-0-3-5.
Glenwood City (22-11-12-61) — D. Hierlmeier 5-2-1-16, P. Hill 1-0-2-2, J. Nelson 1-0-1-3, H. DeSmith 3-2-4-9, Q. Taylor 0-1-0-1, R. Schutz 11-6-3-28, T. Davis 1-0-1-2.
EM — R. Mohr 2, B. Rosenthal 5, D. Curry 1, D. Black 1, B. Lambele 1; GC — D. Hierlmeier 4, J. Nelson 1, H. DeSmith 1. [/emember_protected]