The Burro boys played three times last week, dodging snowstorms and sub-zero wind chills that postponed many contests.

The big game was at Spring Grove Monday night. In spite of an incredible 37-point performance from Burro senior guard Kole Ruud, Spring Grove prevailed 82-67.

The final score does not accurately reflect the character of a game that saw nine lead changes, five tie scores and a narrow 34-32 SG halftime edge. But the result was a giant championship step for the Lions, who remained undefeated in SEC East Division play, enjoying a two-game lead over the second-place Burros (8-4, 6-2 SEC).

"I just thought that both teams played hard, and I think each team knew the importance of the game, which drove each team to play with a lot of emotion and intensity," LHS coach John Smith said later. "I'm sure it was exciting for the fans to watch Ruud and (Luke) Rogers battle back and forth versus the SG defense. They had to work really hard to get their looks last night. I give a lot of credit to SG boys playing so well defensively to try to contain those two."

Three Spring Grove starters scored over 20 points in the contest. Brady Schuttemeier stepped up, delivering a career-high 27-point, 19-rebound double double. Alex Engelhardt also had a double double with 23 points and 10 rebounds, while Chase Grinde scored 23 points, including four three-pointers.

Rogers, arriving with a 20.4 scoring average, put in 18 for the Burros while hitting three of five three-pointers.

Ruud, the reigning Conference Player of the Year, came in averaging 25.2 points per game. Against SG, he nailed eight of 15 treys (53 percent), scored four times on dribble drives and tallied twice on fast breaks.

Fouls were a factor early as Burro senior play-maker Garrett Boggs sat down with two fouls after only 108 seconds of play. After sitting out the next eight minutes, he played only a half minute before being whistled again. Boggs did not foul out but played the final 10 minutes with four fouls.

After four lead changes to start the second half, SG broke a 41-41 tie with an eight-point run only to see Lanesboro answer with a 12-4 run to knot the score again at 53. Spring Grove broke away from that 53-53 tie with a 13-4 run to finally separate for good.

With a 72-62 lead and 3:00 left on the clock, the Lions began to slow the pace, and the Burros soon were forced to foul. SG iced the win as Schuttemeier, Engelhardt and Grinde combined to sink 10 of 12 free throws in the final two minutes. The Lions shot well at the foul line all night, finishing 16 for 21 (a season high 76 percent).

From the field, SG arrived after their two coldest shooting games of the season to notch a 47 percent success rate against the Burros. It was the Lions' second best field goal percentage of the season.

Predictably, Lanesboro relied heavily on a three-point attack. Close to their season average, the Burros put up 39 shots from beyond the arc and 34 attempts closer in.

Hitting 32 percent of their treys for the season, the Burros shot 33 percent (13 for 39) versus SG. The 67-point output was very close to their 69-point team scoring average.

The second LHS-SG meeting proved a much higher scoring game than the Lions' 63-55 November road win at Lanesboro. With a season-high 82 points, SG was 19 points better than its season average.

Rebounds were critical with the Lions collecting 49 to only 26 for the Burros. SG had seven more offensive boards than Lanesboro and outscored the Burros 9-0 in put-back points.

The two teams came into this season with 47 wins apiece in the series since 1948. SG has now edged ahead 49 wins to 47.

The B-team game went down to the final second. Adam Sutter hit his only three-pointer of the game with 12 seconds to play to lift Lanesboro to a 51-50 win.

Lanesboro versus Lyle-Pacelli

On Friday, Ruud hit for 30 while Rogers scored 25, driving the Burros to a 69-45 win over the Athletics in Lanesboro.

"Friday night we started out a little sluggish and sloppy defensively in the first half, but in the second half our defense started getting better rotations and we rebounded better which led to more transition opportunities for us," Smith reported. "Kole and Luke shot really well from the three point line which led to us opening up our lead."

The Burros held L/P to just 13 second-half points.

Totaling 13 of 24 (54 percent) from beyond the arc, Lanesboro took exactly three times as many three-point tries as their opponents. The Athletics hit 38 percent of their treys, 44 percent from closer in. Free throw opportunities for the visitors were few, with L/P hitting four of six. Lanesboro canned six of 10 from the line.

The turnover tussle went to LHS, 22-16. Rebounds were close, 25 for Lanesboro and 24 for L/P. The Burros passed effectively, totaling 16 assists to only eight for the A's.

Liam Dorn pulled down seven rebounds and scored four points for LHS. Rogers had six boards and seven assists with only two turnovers. Ruud dished for four assists and grabbed three rebounds. Boggs had five steals, passed for three assists with no turnovers, snagged three rebounds, took a charge, and scored four points. Zach Voeltz came off the bench for six points and a steal. Will Semmen had two rebounds and a pair of assists.

Jordan Hart led the A's with 10 points. Jordan Cotter scored nine, while Noah Jiskra added eight.

Lanesboro versus Prairie Seeds Academy

Owatonna High school was the site on Saturday, when Lanesboro's first-ever match with Prairie Seeds Academy (Brooklyn Park) occurred. The Lycans are a Class AA opponent with about twice Lanesboro's enrollment. They play in the Minnesota Charter School Conference.

PSA squeaked by with an 81-76 win.

"We played really well the first half on both ends of the floor," Smith said. "Kole Ruud played very well against the tall and athletic team from PSA. We got them out of their pressure early by beating their press. We had a nice lead at half-time but the second half we had a few bad possessions at the end of the game which included a couple easy put-back baskets on missed free-throws. Overall it was a good game throughout with both teams playing hard with the outcome being decided at the free-throw line the final couple minutes.

The Lycans jumped out to an early 18-11 lead, but the Burros battled back to tie it at 22, then took a 42-34 lead into the locker room. Midway through the second period, PSA edged ahead 53-52, and then the game was back and forth to the end, with ties at 57, 61, and 64.

Ruud hit the net with an eagle-eye 38 points, including six treys. Rogers poured in 21, with eight points each coming from Boggs and Dorn.

Rogers had 11 rebounds for the double double. Dorn pulled down nine boards, while Boggs had five. Ruud got four rebounds, while Tylar Miller came off the bench for two.

Boggs delivered five assists and two steals. Dorn blocked a shot, took two charges, and snagged a steal. Ruud dished for two assists, while Rogers passed for four.

Sophomore forward Landon Kirkwood led the Lycans with 25 points. Junior forward Brady Reinke added 22.

Up next

The Burros are scheduled to host LeRoy-Ostrander on Tuesday, Jan. 21. Two nights later they travel to Grand Meadow. Next Monday, they host Hope Lutheran and Thursday, Jan. 30, they travel to Fillmore Central.



Southeast Conference Boys

Basketball through Jan. 21 games

EAST DIVISION

Spring Grove 12-0 SEC (15-3 all)

Lanesboro 8-2 SEC (10-5 all)

Mabel-Canton 8-3 SEC (9-8 all)

Hope Lutheran 5-5 SEC (7-8 all)Houston 4-7 SEC (4-10 all)

WEST DIVISION

Schaeffer Academy 5-5 SEC (7-9 all)

Grand Meadow 4-6 (5-10 all)

Lyle/Pacelli 4-8 SEC (4-11 all)

Glenville-Emmons 3-7 SEC (5-10 all)

LeRoy-Ostrander 0-10 SEC (1-12 all)