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MTZ boys basketball wins three in a row

Sam Driscoll defends the ballhandler in a 59-48 win against Effingham at Effingham.

Staff Writer

The Mt. Zion boys basketball team won all three of its games last week.

Against Effingham, the Braves were down early as the Flaming Hearts sank their first five three-pointers of the game with Andrew Donaldson hitting four of those and Garrett Wolfe hitting one to give them a 16-7 lead.

The Braves narrowed the Flaming Hearts’ lead to 18-15 going into the second quarter. The Braves went into the second quarter start off their offense with Lyncoln Koester nailing two free-throws and then on the next possession, the Braves took the lead when Brayden Trimble made an assist to Carson Cuddy for a mid-range basket.

The Braves were able to create momentum later in the second quarter.the sequence that started it off when Kam Clark shot a three-pointer and missed, but followed his shot for the offensive rebound and drove in to make the layup to give the Braves a 23-20 lead. Koester then made an assist to JC Anderson who made the layup in the paint and then Clark made a back-tip assist to Cuddy who nailed the mid-range jumper to help give the Braves a 27-22 lead.

In the second half, the Braves took at one-point a 15-point lead, but continued to miss layups at the rim and couldn’t contain the Flaming Hearts on the boards or defensively. The Flaming Hearts got within nine when Donaldson nailed a three-pointer to make the score 55-46. Koester then found Cuddy for a dunk that secured the win as the Braves won 59-48. Cuddy led the Braves with 15 points.

“The missed layups happen sometimes,” Head Coach Dale Schuring said. “We got shots up; that’s the positive and sometimes we will miss them, but we missed a ton tonight and it wasn’t one guy, it was everyone. That’s just part of it, but the lack of defense and our overall shot selection and stuff like that has gotta change, but it’s gotta come from them because it’s been communicated over and over again that we need to improve in areas and right now we’re not doing it.”

The Braves improved to 17-2 overall and 6-0 in Apollo conference play. This week the Braves will face Charleston at home.

“Our rebounding has gotta get better,” Coach Schuring said. “We’re going to see some big kids and good athletes tomorrow (last Saturday). If we can’t rebound any better than that it’s going to be a long day. We f have yet back to playing defense, rebound and executing on offense where we move the ball and share the ball to get the best shot rather than trying to play one-on-one basketball.”

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