Article by Harry Lipsea, Devils Lake Journal Sports, November 29th, 2016.
Not many times does a squad get the opportunity to avenge its two losses in back-to-back games. That, however, was the case for the Lake Region State College men's basketball team this weekend.
Earlier in the season, the team fell to Gillette College, 105-79, and Miles Community College, 66-56, in non-conference action.
The Royals, travelled to Wyoming to clash with both teams, were able to see that they have improved as the year has gone on.
On Friday, the undefeated Pronghorns knocked off LRSC for the second time this season. The home squad picked up the 94-79 victory.
"I was happy with how we played and don't think we have anything to be down about. A few plays here or there were the difference but it shows we have grown since we played them last," Jared Marshall, Lake Region State College head men's basketball coach, noted.
LRSC bounced back the next day with a 77-74 triumph in overtime over the Pioneers.
So, the Royals were able to avenge one of its previous losses.
"I think the difference tonight was we handled their press and zone defense much better than we did the first go around," Marshall pointed out.
Gillette 94 LRSC 79
The first time the Royals and the Pronghorns played in Devils Lake, visiting Gillette College jumped out to a very quick start and controlled throughout.
On Friday, however, the action was very competitive throughout. LRSC jumped out a to quick start gaining a lead early on. Gillette, however, closed out the first half with a very strong stretch taking a 46-32 advantage at the half.
The Royals didn't go down easy. In fact, the road team put together an impressive run of its own in the second half. LRSC got as close as three points forcing Gillette to take a timeout.
The Pronghorns were able to answer back and ultimately wrap up the 94-79 victory.
With the win, Gillette improved to 8-0. Meanwhile, LRSC fell to 8-3. Despite the loss, Marshall pointed out that there were a lot of positives for the Royals.
"One of the the things we struggled with the first game was sharing the basketball and having good ball movement. I was much happier with our effort in that area the second time around," the coach noted.
Jordan Bolton led the way with 28 points. Ben Rennie finished with 14 points while Cedric Boone added 10. Nic Fassos netted nine points while Derrick Laudenbach and Jarrett Baptiste scored six points each. James Streeter, Harvey Barr and Jayson Edwards rounded out the scoring with two points.
"Ben Rennie carried us offensively in the first scoring most of his points. They really keyed on him in the second and Jordan Bolton, the reigning Mon-Dak Player of the Week, really stepped up in the second and made some big time shots," Marshall stated.
LRSC 77 MCC 74
It was a tight game throughout as Miles Community College and Lake Region State College clashed for the second time this season.
The Royals led 34-31 over the Pionners at the half.
Miles Community College was able to tie the game up at 70 at the end of regulation. A three by Cedric Boone and a key steal by Jordan Bolton sealed up the 77-74 overtime victory for Lake Region State College.
"I told the team before the game that the tougher team would win and there is no doubt in my mind we were the tougher team. We were resilient all night no matter what happened," Marshall pointed out.
Boone led the way with 27 points. Bolton finished with 13 points. Nic Fassos had nine points and 11 rebounds. Jayson Edwards scored eight points. Ben Rennie, Harvey Barr and Derrick Laudenbach finished with four points apiece. James Streeter and Kobe Boraas netted three points each while Jarrett Baptiste rounded out the scoring with two points.
"We really struggled to shoot the ball at times but made some big ones when we needed to and kept attacking the hoops to get free throws. Us limiting turnovers and killing in on the boards was the difference in the game," the coach added.
The Royals improved to 9-3 overall with the victory. Marshall felt that it was a productive road trip for LRSC as the squad showed improvement.
"I am happy coming away 1-1 against two quality opponents. These are the only two teams we've lost to and we were able to avenge one of them. It's never easy winning on the road, especially on back to back nights, but we found a way to get it done. I love the way we competed this weekend," he pointed out.
LRSC travels to Minnesota to play Dakota Community and Technical College Wednesday.