Alex Engelhardt reaches for one of his six rebounds over teammate Blaine Storlie (#31) against LeRoy-Ostrander.<br /><br /><!-- 1upcrlf2 -->
Alex Engelhardt reaches for one of his six rebounds over teammate Blaine Storlie (#31) against LeRoy-Ostrander.

Dec. 28 found the Spring Grove boys being blasted by Rushford-Peterson 69-44 in the second night of the Holiday Festival at La Crescent.

On Jan. 4, the Lions resumed their regular league schedule hosting LeRoy-Ostrander, soundly defeating their guests 90-37.

A day after the Herald deadline this week, the boys hosted Lanesboro, the only other SEC team without a conference defeat.

SG vs. R-P, 44-69

The Trojans dominated Spring Grove from the get-go in a rematch from last year's sub-section championship game.

R-P sophomore point guard Cole Kingsley starred on both ends of the court, scoring 15 points and dishing out 8 assists. He also grabbed 5 rebounds while defending with 5 steals and a blocked shot.

Josh Olerud had 17 points for Spring Grove to lead all scorers, but no other Lion was close to double figures.

The Trojans executed with precision on both ends of the floor, passing out 19 assists on offense and making 14 steals on defense. They had only 11 ball-handling turnovers plus three charging fouls. On one marathon possession, R-P completed 21 passes before Kyle Johnson sank a three-point basket.

In the first half, the Lions had 12 turnovers and grabbed only one offensive rebound while taking only 17 shots from the field. They trailed 41-20 at the half and fell behind by as many as 29 points in the second period.

Although the Lions handled the ball better in the second half and collected more boards, they couldn't match the sharpshooting Trojans.

R-P shot well from everywhere, out-scoring Spring Grove 46% to 37% from the field overall including a 36% to 27% edge from beyond the arc.

Both teams shot well at the foul line, but the Lions' only statistical edge came by earning more free throws (15 for 22, 68%) than did R-P (11 for 15, 73%).

Spring Grove finished with 20 turnovers while being outrebounded 27-17.

Spring Grove scorers also included Brady Schuttemeier and Blaine Storlie with 7 points apiece plus Chase Grinde with 6, Alex Engelhardt with 4, Dustin Vickerman with 2 and Dylan Kampschroer with 1. Brandon Schuttemeier came down with a game-high 6 rebounds.

Ten Trojans scored including Jorli Haugen with 12 points and Johnson with 10.

R-P tallied 29 points off the bench accounting for five of the Trojans' eight three-point field goals. The Trojans attempted twice as many 3-point shots (8 for 22) as did Spring Grove (3 for 11).

In the annual holiday double headers, the Lion B-team boys (6-2) suffered their first setbacks of the season against Caledonia (29-42) and R-P (25-43).

SG vs. L-O, 90-37

It was the 30th straight conference victory for Spring Grove and the 27th straight league loss for L-O.

Spring Grove hit 13 of 28 three-point shots over a L-O height-deficient zone. That was the Lions' most made treys in over 99 games since hitting 16 against Kee in February of 2009. That 46% accuracy from beyond the arc was the Lions' best of the season.

Five Lions nailed triples including Grinde who hit 5 of 8 while scoring a career-high 20 points. The 5-foot 9-inch eighth-grade reserve also sparked the defense, taking 2 charges and blocking a shot.

Storlie used 3 treys to notch a game-high 21 points. He also contributed 4 assists, 4 steals and a career-high 8 rebounds.

With Brandon Schuttemeier absent due to illness, Vickerman drew his first varsity start as a sophomore and also hit 3 treys, scoring a career high 13 points while passing out 5 assists with no turnovers.

Olerud, who scored in double figures for the seventh straight game, hit his only three-point attempt on the way to 13 points while matching Storlie's team-high 8 rebounds.

Engelhardt put in 9 points, lifted 4 steals and like Vickerman had 5 assists (a career-best) with no turnovers.

Elliott Cross came off the bench and promptly drilled his only trey attempt. He finished a perfect 3 for 3 from the field with a career-high 7 points.

Brady Schuttemeier added 7 points, blocked 2 shots and along with Engelhardt grabbed 6 rebounds as Spring Grove achieved its greatest rebounding margin of the season, 38 to 20. Sophomore reserve center Tanner Sanness had a career-best two assists, one of four Lions with assists but no turnovers.

The tallest Cardinal, 6-2 junior forward Zach Royston, hit 7 of 14 shots to lead L-O with 16 points and a game-high 9 rebounds. The Cards were missing a key senior, and only six L-O players saw action (three seniors, two juniors and a sophomore).

The Lions played with only 7 turnovers, their fewest of the season, which along with 19 assists equaled their best assist-to-turnover ratio of the year.

Spring Grove matched a season best 51% shooting from the field while limiting L-O to far fewer attempts and only 32% accuracy. The Cardinals missed their first seven shots; the Lions hit 4 of their first 5 and led 53-19 at halftime.

With all the open shots from the perimeter, the Lions made few stops at the foul line. They attempted a season-low 7 free throws but shot well sinking 5 (71%). L-O went 6 for 12 at the line.

The Cards displayed some shooting skill but had 28 turnovers and had difficulty getting good looks at the basket challenged by a Lion defense that converted 19 steals into 21 fast-break points and allowed L-O few second chances (only 6 offensive rebounds).

Eighth-grader Damon Cody recorded 19 points as all nine players on the Spring Grove B-team (7-2) got on the scoreboard, ripping LeRoy-Ostrander 73-10.

Up Next: Spring Grove hosted Lanesboro on Jan. 8. On Friday, the Lions travel to Schaeffer Academy.

On Saturday, Jan. 12, Goodhue visits Spring Grove with an approximate 4 p.m. start as the second half of a girls/boys doubleheader.

Tuesday, Jan. 15 finds the Lions visiting Hope Lutheran for a 6 p.m. tip as the first game of a boys/girls twin bill.

Southeast Conference 2013

BOYS Basketball conf. season

EAST DIVISION W L W L

Lanesboro 6 - 0 7 - 1

Spring Grove * 6 - 0 6 - 3

Mabel-Canton 3 - 4 3 - 7

Hope Lutheran 2 - 5 5 - 7

Houston 0 - 5 0 - 9

* defending division champion