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MTZ boys basketball wins all three last week

Sam Driscoll fires a pass to Lyncoln Koester in a 61-40 win against Mahomet-Seymour at Mt. Zion.

By BLAKE FAITH
Staff Writer

The Mt. Zion boys basketball team won three games last week. The Braves picked up non-conference wins against Teutopolis and Jacksonville and picked up an Apollo conference win against Mahomet-Seymour.

Against Mahomet-Seymour, the Braves’ offense started off slow. After the first quarter the Braves trailed by 9-6. Lyncoln Koester had all six of the Braves points hitting the only two shots for the Braves in the quarter.

In the second quarter, the Braves regained their form. Koester found Carson Cuddy who nailed the wing three-pointer to tie the game at 9-9. A minute later JC Anderson was fouled and after going 1-of-2 from the free-throw line gave the Braves a 10-9 lead.

“We tend to suffer a lot and we talk about it a lot,” Head coach Dale Schuring said. You just can’t fire up three after three after three when they’re not falling. If we make the first three, then hey, we’re on tonight, keep shooting them. But, when we miss four or five in a row, we keep doing it, you have to be smarter than that. You gotta come up with a second answer. I’m not saying quit shooting for the whole game, but can we get in the paint, can we get a layup, 12-footer, get to the free-throw line. We’ve been down at the end of the first quarter in multiple games recently, and it’s simply because of that type of situation where we’re not adjusting to what’s working well for us or not working. We are going to continue to work on that, make our players aware of that and improve from there.”

The Braves turned those early possessions into a 11-4 run. Brayden Trimble continued the run when he made a steal and made his first of two crowd-rising dunks. Cuddy bailed two more three-pointers, Koester made two free-throws and Anderson made a layup inside of that run to give the Braves a 22-13 lead.

The Braves finished the second quarter with a 29-24 lead. Early in the third quarter the Bulldogs tried to create momentum after Jake Waldinger hit a three-pointer and then was fouled on a three-point attempt. Waldinger went 1-of-3 from the line and cut the Braves’ lead to 29-21.

The Braves went on to win 61-40. Koester scored a game-high 22 points.

The Braves improved to 23-2 overall and 8-0 in Apollo conference play. This week the Braves will face Taylorville.

“We have to take it one game at a time,” Coach Schuring said. “Obviously we have an eye to the future with some of those teams after next week and so forth. But, Taylorville gave us fits for probably a good half. And the first time we played ‘em, they’re well coached. We can’t look past anybody. And again, we gotta continue to improve and try and correct the things that are going wrong and we’ll have some time to do that and also time to maybe get rejuvenated a little bit and take a little time off and try and come back strong for those last two weeks plus then state tournament stuff.”

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