Trees take Jays to curb
The Bluejays boys basketball team had been on a solid run recently, winning 4-of-6 games in a 4-11 season and losing the other two by close tallies.
But Friday’s contest with D.C. Everest in a co-ed double-header clearly bucked that trend. The Evergreens prevailed in every period and finally left town with a 67-40 victory.
“We got beat up and down the court and every which way you can,” MHS coach Kurt Soderberg said. “Everest has a very sharp team and they are very well coached. They played really well and we didn’t. It was not a contest from the middle of the second quarter on.
“They’re a good team, but not 27 points better. It’s hard to swallow.”
Everest used a multi-dimensional attack to put MHS on its heels.
“Offensively, you name it, they did it,” Soderberg said. “They got the ball inside and took it to the rim, they hit threes, they shot 63% from the field. You just can’t beat that.
“(Josh) Nielson hit five threes in the game and three in the first half. That throws you off.”
The Jays dropped to 1-4 in the WVC, while Everest bumped up to 4-1. Merrill had just lost 39-34 to 6-0 SPASH on Jan. 4.
But the Evergreen grabbed a 16-11 lead in the first quarter and pushed it to 28-16 by halftime. A 16-7 run in the third quarter put Merrill in a bad spot and it didn’t get any better with a 23-17 fourth.
“The things we’ve been doing to get the wins, and even in the SPASH game to keep it close, didn’t happen,” Soderberg said. “We didn’t get to the line and we didn’t shoot very well. Our defense let us down for perhaps the first time this season.
“Our shooting woes from the three-point line continued. We’re focusing on getting back to what works for us. I hope to see much improvement.””
Contributions for the Jays came from: David Jesperson (11 p, 6 r); Jake Anderson (8 p, 6 r); Paul Theorin (11 p); Andrew Seaman (8 p); Matt Rekowski (4 r).
Merrill-FG: 17-40 (43%); FT: 1-6 (17%). D.C.E.-FG: 24-38 (63%); FT: 14-22 (64%).