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AREA BOYS BASKETBALL: Balanced Rangers roll over Cardinals

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sports Brainerd, 56401

Brainerd MN 506 James St. / PO Box 974 56401

CROSBY — By reversing the ball, the Crosby-Ironton Rangers have reversed their fortunes.

Their unselfish, patient offensive attack was on display Friday in the Ranger Gym as C-I shot 57 percent from the field in the first half, including 60 percent from 3-point, to claim a 48-23 halftime edge over the Staples-Motley Cardinals. The red-hot Rangers turned that into a 72-41 Mid-State Conference victory — C-I’s fifth straight.

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“I thought offensively we came out and reversed the ball well,” said Ranger head coach Dave Galovich “The past two or three weeks, I thought we’ve been doing that a lot better. When we have ball reversal we get everyone involved and we’ve been averaging four guys in double figures with our fifth guy over eight points a game. That balance has been leading to our success.”

All five C-I starters scored at least eight points. Will Goodwin, who was a perfect 5-of-5 from the field and 3-for-3 from the line in the first half, led the Rangers with 16 points. Daniel Hudrlik, who was 6-of-6 from the field, followed with 14 points and 11 rebounds. Michael Hoge and Caleb Baker both added 10 points and Jacob Goodwin scored eight.

“Daniel has been really active on the offensive boards and if he doesn’t get a rebound he has a knack for tipping the ball out to our perimeter guys,” Galovich said “He’s elusive and quick and he’s a difficult man to box out.

“I just think our guys are doing a terrific job. We’ve had a different perimeter guy lead us in scoring almost every night. They’re willing to make the extra pass and when they do that we get some uncontested looks at the basket. That allows us to shoot with a decent percentage.”

Jordaan Reynolds and Garrett Van Horn both came off the bench to add seven points for the 12-7 Rangers.

“They hit six threes in the first half and we just stood back and let them have them,” said Cardinals head coach Ray Gildow. “We didn’t want to let guys just stand outside and shoot 3s, but we just haven’t learned to play with the intensity that C-I has.”

The Cardinals, led by Grant Longbella’s 10 points, jumped out to a quick 4-0 lead, but the Rangers answered with 11-0 and 14-2 runs. They added a 9-0 run late in the opening frame for their comfortable lead.

Defensively, C-I forced S-M into 10 turnovers and turned those into 18 points in the first half. The Cardinals shot just 38 percent from the field and only went to the line five times, making only one.

“We shot poorly and we didn’t play very good defense,” said Gildow. “We played a little bit better defense in the second half, but we still shot poorly.

“C-I played good, hard-nosed defense and we think we’re playing hard, but we’re not. We just let them have whatever they wanted. We weren’t closing out on people.

“I told the guys they needed to start coming out with intensity defensively or we’re going to keep losing and I thought they played a little better defensively in the second half.”

Staples-Motley 23 18 — 41

Crosby-Ironton 48 24 — 72

STAPLES-MOTLEY

Shane Suess 4, Brian Huber 8, Jordan Wick 6, Dennis Vasquez 4, Seth Auger 5, Grant Longbella 10, Zach Borders 4. FG 19-50 (38 percent), FT 1-5 (20 percent), 3-point baskets: 2-10 (20 percent).

CROSBY-IRONTON

Jacob Goodwin 8, Will Goodwin 16, Michael Hoge 10, Caleb Baker 10, Jordaan Reynolds 7, Garrett Van Horn 7, Daniel Hudrlik 14. FG 28-51 (55 percent), FT 9-11 (82 percent), 3-point baskets: 7-14 (50 percent).

JEREMY MILLSOP may be reached at jeremy.millsop@brainerddispatch.com or at 855-5856.

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