Red Robins bombard Bluejays with red-hot shooting
The Bluejay boys took a short step backward in last Tuesday’s game at Antigo, dropping a 50-37 contest.
“It was very disappointing,” MHS coach Kurt Soderberg said. “It was not a very well-played game on the Bluejays side and a very well-played game on the Antigo side.
“The kids felt good about themselves. We had a strong showing in our scrimmage and in the Green Bay East game, so our expectation was we would play well. Really I was shocked and that ramps up the frustration level quite a bit.”
The Red Robins did most of their damage early, grabbing 13-8 and 24-15 leads over the first two quarters.
“There were certainly things I needed to do better as a coach,” Soderberg said. “I didn’t take enough time outs early when we needed them to get settled down and I stayed in man-to-man (defense) too long. I didn’t put the kids in good enough spots to succeed.
“Early on, our defensive communication or lack there-of gave them some easy baskets that gave them early looks and momentum. We didn’t do a great job of recognizing who the scoring threats were and what they were trying to accomplish.
“On the other hand, they had three kids that shot 66% from three-point range. Thirty-three % is the break-even point and 66% is just off the charts good. A couple were wide open, but others were tough shots.”
The Bluejays felt they could easily turn the game around after intermission.
“We were down by nine at the half, but we didn’t feel like we had played well,” Soderberg said. “Then to start the second half, we had five possessions in a row where we got them to turn it over, and we didn’t convert.”
Merrill would only score three in the third while holding Antigo to seven. The teams played to a 19-19 draw in the fourth.
Soderberg liked the way his kids handled the situation.
“The kids came ready to work on Wednesday for practice,” he said. “I’m really proud of the way they kept their heads up and played with class. We just got beat and that happens.”
Jake Anderson led the team with 10 points. Other contributions came from: Alex Zettler (7 p, 5 r); Brandon Bartz (7 p, 3 st); Chaz Mootz (4 p, 3 a); Nick Peterson (6 p); and Austin Reissmann (3 p).
Merrill–FG: 13-32 (41%); FT: 6-10 (60%). Antigo–FG: 16-24 (67%); FT: 11-13 (85%).