GRAETTINGER - Estherville Lincoln Central got its first win of the season in a big way with a 55-30 victory over Graettinger-Terril/Ruthven-Ayrshire on Saturday.
The Midgets had a dominating first half in building a 25-7 lead in the first half.
ELC actually trailed 5-2 after the Titans' Trevor Hagedorn converted a three-point play and Connor Sturgill hit an early basket.
Estherville Lincoln Central’s Derek Nieland (3) glides in for a layup against Graettinger-Terril/Ruthven-Ayrshire as the Midgets picked up their first win of the season.
EDN photo by David Swartz
But two free throws by Tyler Swanson and another by Evan Hansen tied the game at 5-5. Swanson then hit a 3-pointer to ELC ahead for good.
The 3-pointer also started a 20-0 Midget run that only ended when Austin Dyer converted two free throws with 4.3 seconds remaining in the first half.
"We were overmatched by a much more physical team," said GT/RA coach Randy Hough. "We did not take care of the basketball very well and we were very tired from the night before."
Contributing to the run where David Hughes, Joe Heinrichs, Matt Burrell, Nieland and Swanson.
The Titans tried to battle back to start the third quarter with Sturgill converting a couple baskets and Andy Geelan hit a 3-pointer to bring the hosts within 13, 30-17.
Sophomore Justin Heinrichs entered the game and scored five quick points, hitting a 3-pointer and then converting a steal into a layup. A layup by Joe Heinrichs gave ELC back a 20-point lead, 37-37. A three-point play by David Hughes and a layup by Carsten Bosch ended a 12-0 ELC run and gave ELC a 42-17 lead.
ELC led 46-19 to start the final frame. ELC extended the lead to their largest advantage at 50-21 after a 3-pointer by Tucker Milburn and a free throw by Nieland.
The Titans made the score look more respectable as Marcus Girres hit three 3-pointers in the final minutes.
Eleven ELC players were in the scoring column led by Burrell and Swanson with eight points, Justin Heinrichs and Joe Heinrichs each had seven points, Hughes and Nieland each had five, Bosch had four, Milburn and Fuller each had three, Reiter and Jeff Perkins each had two and Hansen had one. Burrell pulled down six rebounds and Nieland had five. Hansen had four steals while Swanson Joe Heinrichs and Reiter each had three. Joe Heinrichs and Bosch each had three assists.
ELC was 10-for-15 from the free throw line. The Titans were 4-for-9.
Sturgill led GT/Ra with 10 points while Girres had nine, Dyer and Geelan each had four and Hagedorn had three. Sturgill had a team-high nine rebounds. Dyer had three assists.
ELC (1-2) is home against Emmetsburg this evening.
GT/RA (1-2) travels to Storm Lake to take on St. Mary's.