Lion defense steps up in 45-36 win over Highland

By Jeff Yoder
Posted 12/7/21

The fourth quarter was a problem for Lone Tree in each of its first two games. The Lion defense had allowed 42 fourth-quarter points as games slipped away at Belle Plaine and Keota.

But on Monday, …

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Lion defense steps up in 45-36 win over Highland

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The fourth quarter was a problem for Lone Tree in each of its first two games. The Lion defense had allowed 42 fourth-quarter points as games slipped away at Belle Plaine and Keota.

But on Monday, the final quarter belonged to Lone Tree.

Tied with Highland at 30-30, Lion seniors Cade Shield and Cade Patterson combined to score the next 10 Lone Tree points as the Lions went on a 12-2 run.

Lone Tree held Highland to eight points in the fourth quarter of the 45-36 win. 

“I thought our defense really stepped up,” Lone Tree coach Tom Squiers said. “We just have been in such a shooting slump, but the one thing we’ve been preaching in practice since day one is, if we play good defense, we’re going to be in every game.”

Lone Tree held a 21-18 lead at halftime. The Huskies tied the game three times in the second half, but couldn’t take the lead. 

The Lion lead stayed at five points or less through the first 12 minutes of the second half until Patterson’s fourth 3-pointer put the Lions ahead 38-32. Then Shield drove the ball to the basket for a layup, drawing a foul while pushing the lead to eight. 

“We just stayed together,” Patterson said.”We knew they were going to pressure the ball in the second half and we just limited those turnovers and got the easy baskets that we knew we could.”

Patterson had a game-high 15 points and blocked seven shots for Lone Tree. 

A season ago, the Lions started 0-9 in conference play and 0-10 on their home court. They left the court on Monday undefeated at home, and perfect in SEISC play at 1-0. 

“It feels amazing,” Patterson said. “We knew we’d have to work hard in the offseason and we did that because we didn’t want a repeat of last season.”

Cade Shield scored all 13 of his points in the second half. Lone Tree made just two field goals in the third quarter, but Shield’s 3-pointer was the big one, giving Lone Tree a 28-24 lead. 

Four players hit a 3-pointer for Lone Tree, including Matt Fellows and Adam Knock, who scored seven and five, respectively. 

Chase Schultz scored 10 of Highland’s 18 points in the second half, finishing the game with 12. Squiers was happy to limit the Highland senior to a dozen. 

“Mitchell Koedam did a really good job on Schultz,” he said. “Schultz can hit some threes, (Koedam) did a good job of denying him the ball at the top of the key, and just really made it difficult for him to score, I thought.”

Lone Tree went on a 12-0 run in the second quarter, which included a pair of 3-pointers from Patterson and a nice pass from Drew Gauley that led to a basket for Tyce Alt. 

Trevor McFarland had the response for Highland though, scoring the final six points of the half with a pair of steals. McFarland scored the Huskies’ first points of the second half with a steal and layup as well. He finished with a team-high 13. 

“Trevor is our point guard, and after our first game, I told him that he needs to have the ball in his hands more, because things happen for us when it’s in his hands,” Highland coach Bill Zywiec explained. “And Chase has got to be dominant for us, we need his big presence around the basketball, and he’s got to look to score. Sometimes he’s unselfish with the basketball when we need him to be selfish with it.”

Connor Grinstead was 4-of-5 at the foul line for the Huskies. Kaige Vonnahme hit a 3-pointer, finishing with four points, and Devin Lovetinsky added three. 

“We’re still trying to learn how to finish ballgames,” Zywiec said. “That’s something that plagued us last year — just having those stretches in the ballgame when we’re just not able to put the ball in the rim and we’ve got to figure out how to get past that. I told them, I think our best offense tonight might have been our defense at times.

“We just haven’t found our rhythm yet offensively and we’re trying to put pieces together and I think if we can figure that out, we’ll hopefully have a better game tomorrow night.”

 

WMU 58, Highland 22

Senior Connor Grinstead led Highland with seven points in a 58-22 loss to Winfield-Mt. Union on Friday. The Wolves’ 6-foot-4 and 6-foot-6 sophomores Cam Buffington and Abram Edwards combined for 38 points and 26 rebounds. Chase Schultz had eight rebounds for Highland. Devin Lovetinsky had four points and  Brenton Bonebrake had four points and three steals. 

 

Keota 52, Lone Tree 40

It was a cold shooting night for the Lions in a 52-40 loss at Keota on Thursday. The Lions went 1-for-17 from the 3-point line and shot just 28 percent from the floor overall. Cade Patterson led the Lions with 14 points and Mitchell Koedam scored 10. Lone Tree won the turnover battle 16-11 and both teams had 13 offensive rebounds. Tyler Bell scored seven points and grabbed six rebounds. Keota scored 28 points through the first three quarters before exploding for 24 points in the fourth. 

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