Brady Schuttemeier (#43), Blaine Storlie and Elliott Cross (#11) set up defense as Caledonia’s Kyle Sorenson inbounds the ball.
Brady Schuttemeier (#43), Blaine Storlie and Elliott Cross (#11) set up defense as Caledonia’s Kyle Sorenson inbounds the ball.

The Spring Grove boys basketball team played AA Caledonia at La Crescent on Dec. 26 in game one of the 2012 Holiday Showcase. Spring Grove fell short 68-52 in Wednesday's cross-county non-conference match.

Competent Warrior defense and a patient Lion offense dictated the tempo that otherwise would have been much faster with both teams defending full court much of the game.

Even so, only four of the Lions' 19 turnovers came in the backcourt. Most of the game saw Spring Grove working and passing, attempting to get a shot against the Warriors' half-court trapping zone.

Spring Grove got few open looks at the basket with almost all three-point attempts being contested. The Lions tried almost as many three-point shots (22) as two-point field goals (26). Only 22 two-pointers were cleanly launched with the other four resulting in fouls.

With a season-high eight treys, the Lions scored twice as many points from downtown (24) as they did with two-pointers (12).

Spring Grove shot a good 36% from beyond the arc (8 for 22), but overall had the lowest percentage from the field (32%) in 39 games.

Even while cold from the field, the Lions hit a great 84% from the foul line (16 for 19). Conversely, Caledonia was cold at the line (42%, 8 for 19) while a sizzling at 43% from three-point range (6 for 14). The Warriors wound up 55% overall from the field.

With Spring Grove working with many passes against the Caledonia zone, the Lions attempted the fewest official shots (44) in their last 41 games. For their part, the Warriors attempted only 49 shots, but Caledonia baskets came more quickly including 16 fast break points.

Caledonia's height advantage resulted in a 31-23 rebounding margin and the Warriors outscoring Spring Grove 36-14 in the lane. The Lions stayed in contention for most of the first half with threes and free throws.

Caledonia scored the first 5 points of the game before the Lions even got off a shot. But it was still a 5-point margin at (30-25) late in the first half before the Warriors put together a 19-6 run spanning halftime.

Down by 12 at intermission (39-27), SG would trail by as many as 23 before eighth-grader Chase Grinde dropped in three late triples.

Blaine Storlie led all scorers with 17 points while Lion teammate Josh Olerud put in 12 and Grinde 11. Brandon Schuttemeier scored 5 points, Brady Schuttemeier 4 and Alex Engelhardt 3. Seventeen of the Lions' 23 rebounds came from three players - the Schuttemeiers with 6 each and Engelhardt with 5.

Caledonia scoring was a team effort with 27 points coming off the bench. Eight Warriors had between and 5 and 11 points. Two sophomores, 6-foot, 5-inch guard Kyle Sorenson and Austin Bauer, had 11 each with 10 from senior Alex Varney.

Bauer passed out a game-high 7 assists while Nathan Rohrer had 5 assists to go with 7 points. Despite foul trouble, 6-4 senior center Kevin Lapham had 7 points and a game-high 8 rebounds.

Both teams had key players sitting out in foul trouble including Storlie and Brandon Schuttemeier for Spring Grove plus Warriors Lapham and Varney.

Avenging last year's loss to the Lions, Caledonia improved to 5-1 with the only setback a one-point loss to St. Charles. Spring Grove dropped to 5-2.

Since 1950, Spring Grove has 46 wins in the series and 72 losses. In the second game of the double header, Rushford-Peterson (5-2) pounded host La Crescent 76-45.

Caledonia also won the B-team game, 42-29.

Due to an early press date this week, the Herald will feature full coverage of the Dec. 28 boys' basketball match between Spring Grove and Rushford-Peterson in next week's issue.

On Friday, Jan. 4, Spring Grove hosts LeRoy-Ostrander. The following week, three games are scheduled. Lanesboro visits Spring Grove on Tuesday, Dec. 8. On Friday the Lions travel to Schaeffer Academy. Saturday, Dec. 12 brings Goodhue to Spring Grove for a non-conference contest.

Southeast Conference 2013

BOYS Basketball conf. season


Lanesboro 5 - 0 5 - 1

Spring Grove * 5 - 0 5 - 2

Hope Lutheran 2 - 3 5 - 4

Mabel-Canton 2 - 3 2 - 5

Houston 0 - 4 0 - 5


Lyle/Pacelli 3 - 2 3 - 3

Schaeffer Academy 3 - 2 4 - 4

Grand Meadow 2 - 2 3 - 3

Glenville-Emmons* 1 - 3 1 - 4

LeRoy-Ostrander 0 - 4 0 - 7

* defending division champion