|3/2/2021 2:32:00 PM|
Cardinals cold spell costly at Royall
After a grinder first half with the Royall Panthers, Highland entered the deep freeze and managed only 10 points the final 18 minutes.
That, coupled with 24 points that Royall scored, got the Panthers the WIAA Regional title, 43-26. It also ended the season for the scrappy Cardinals.
It came down to percentages for the Cardinals who shot only 25% from two point range and 20% from three point. After averaging 70% on free throws this season the Cards managed only two of nine.
"Royall is a good team but it was more that our shots would not go down," said Highland coach Shaun Reuter. "We also had some boys who were nicked up."
One of the players, Lucas Welsh, could not play because of an ankle injury sustained the prior week. Welsh has been a strong, physical presence inside all season.
Weston Frost also tweaked his ankle and was limited. And, Maximus Oleson is also recovering from a bad ankle.
"By holding them to 24 I liked our chances but we did not shoot the ball well enough to win," Reuter said.
Brody Uppena led Royall with 15 points and Bryce Gruen added 12.
Oleson led the Cardinals with eight points with Isaac Michek, Cohen Healy and Weston Frost all getting six.
For the most part this season the Cardinals, Benton and Potosi/Cass-ville spent their time beating up on each, chasing undefeated River Ridge. They ended up 9-11 overall, beating P/C twice and losing twice to Benton.
"I was expecting to win more games but we had some shutdowns, cancellations and players who had to miss because of COVID," said Reuter. "But the good thing is we got to play."
Records were deceptive all over this season as teams scrambled to find games at the last minute because that was all they could do at that time.
Heading into the season Reuter was looking at something in the neighborhood of 12 wins but that was before some winnable games were removed,
Reuter had to say good-bye to three seniors who he knows will be missed.
-Justin Miller has been a starter and he knows the game. He is a leader and makes those around him better.
-Isaac Michek works hard and plays hard every minute he is on the court. He gives an all out effort all the time
-Simon McCarthy has improved a lot this season and would play 24/7. He loves to play basketball.
With a lot of returning players for next season Reuter is hoping to see the kids in the weight room and joining summer leagues.
"We can be good again next year," he said.
SCORE BY HALVES
Highland 16 10 26
Royall 19 24 43
HIGHLAND 26: (fg-ft-tp) Oleson 3-1-8, C. Frost 0-0-0, Healy 3-0-6, Miller 0-0-0, Smith 0-0-0, Michek 2-0-6, W. Frost 2-1-6, Hying 0-0-0, Nankey 0-0-0, McCarthy 0-0-0, Talo 0-0-0, Lee 0-0-0. Totals 10-29-26 Fouls-11
ROYALL 43: Turner 2-0-4, Benish 2-0-5, Howe 0-0-0, Olson 0-0-0, Vieth 2-1-5, Gruen 4-2-12, Friedl 0-0-0, Wildes 0-0-0, Wainwright 0-0-0, Keenan 1-0-2, Uppena 5-3-15 Totals 16-6/9-43 Fouls-12
3 point goals:
H-(4) Oleson 1, W. Frost 1, Michek 2
R-(5) Uppena 2, Gruen 2, Benish 1
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