Big stretch helps Voyageurs run past Royals

Big stretch helps Voyageurs run past Royals

Article by Harry Lipsiea, Devils Lake Journal Sports, January 5th, 2016.

There was one lead change Wednesday evening in the men's basketball game between Lake Region State College and Rainy River Community College Wednesday evening at the Sports Center. For the first 15:41 of the game, the Royals controlled the action and the advantage throughout. 

A jumper by Rainy Rivers' Davarius Wright, however, changed that. The two-point basket gave the Voyageurs a 40-39 advantage at 4:18. Rainy River didn't trail again as the squad cruised to a convincing 101-82 road victory.

The team's 18-2 run late in the first half and early in the second half proved to be key on the way to a non-conference victory over the Royals.

While LRSC head coach Jared Marshall knows that it is difficult to come off a long break, he was still disappointed in his team's energy and effort.

"I was embarrassed with how we played for 30 to 35 minutes of the game tonight," the second-year head coach pointed out. "That is taking nothing away from Rainy River. They played with more toughness than we did and deserved to win the game."

The Voyageurs were able to force 26 Royal turnovers and cash them into transition points throughout the game Rainy River out-rebounded Lake Region State College 40 to 37.

"They just had more energy than we did. All game long," Marshall pointed out.

Rainy River led 51- 43 at the half. The Voyageurs came out extremely strong in the second stanza scoring 18 of the first 23 points giving them a 68-48 advantage.

Using constant defensive pressure and excellent shooting, the away team continued to build its lead. Rainy River took its biggest advantage at 82-57 inside of 10 minutes. From there, however, the Royals battled back valiantly.

Behind buckets by Cedric Boone and Jordan Bolton, LRSC put together a 17-3 run making the score 85-74 with 5:37 remaining. The Royals didn't stop there. A drive and a bucket by Boone cut Rainy River's advantage to single digits at nine points with three minutes left.

The comeback attempt, however, was done there as baskets by Ira Johnson and MIke Miller Jr. helped the Voyageurs earn the 101-82 victory.

LRSC was led by Boone with 27 points. Bolton finished with 25 points. Ben Rennie hit double figures with 11 points while Jayson Edwards added eight. Drew Thielges scored five points and Harvey Barr chipped with four points. James Streeter rounded out the scoring with two points. 

Wright led Rainy River with 25 points.

With the loss, the Royals drop to 11-6. 

"In the grand scheme of things, this a non-conference loss that only affects our overall record," Marshall said. "It doesn't change or goals, but we need to bounce back from it. I think it will be very interesting to see how we respond from this game."

The Royals open up conference play Monday in Bismarck. For now, LRSC is focusing on having solid practices and shoring up mistakes from Wednesday evening's loss.

"It's going to come down to locking in on defense and taking care of the ball," the coach said. "We are going to watch the film on this game. I can talk about it all day, but our guys need to see it on tape. At the end of the day, we need to learn from this and get back to work."