Boys Basketball: Turnovers haunt Pepin-AlmaPEPIN - Sophomore Charlie Raethke scored 15 points, nine in the third quarter, and grabbed six rebounds for the Pepin-Alma boys basketball team but it wasn’t enough in a 49-37 loss to Spring Valley Saturday in Pepin.
By: Chris Harrell, The Republican Eagle
PEPIN - Sophomore Charlie Raethke scored 15 points, nine in the third quarter, and grabbed six rebounds for the Pepin-Alma boys basketball team but it wasn’t enough in a 49-37 loss to Spring Valley Saturday in Pepin.
The Eagles (4-12, 3-7 Dairyland-Small) trailed 21-18 at halftime but three straight turnovers at the beginning of the second half led to six points for Spring Valley and Pepin-Alma was shut down in a seven-point fourth quarter.
“You really have to execute against a defense like that and we didn’t,” Eagles head coach Loren Mueller said. “Just sloppy passes on our part and they did a great job of taking advantage of it.”
Pepin-Alma got 11 points from junior Cole Carroll but shot just 9 of 17 from the free-throw line in the loss. Senior Jacob Lerum had eight rebounds.
Zac Webster led Spring Valley with 20 points, 12 in the second half. Troy Rudesill added 12 points. Spring Valley hit 10 of 15 free throws.
The first half was back-and-forth with the Eagles leading 10-9 at the end of the first quarter and Spring Valley outscoring Pepin-Alma 12-8 in the second quarter. The Eagles allowed two quick scores by Rudesill in the final minute of the first half, including a short jump shot as the buzzer sounded. The last second shot took some momentum away from a decent first half by Pepin-Alma.
“It probably stung a little but we do need to learn to get over that,” Mueller said.
The third quarter started dreadfully for the Eagles with the three turnovers leading to easy baskets for Spring Valley as the lead grew to 27-18.
“We came out with very little intensity,” Raethke said. “They had really tough man-to-man defense and we let them dictate.”
Raethke tallied Pepin-Alma’s first points of the second half at the six-minute mark. Spring Valley pushed the lead to 31-22 before the Eagles used an 8-2 run over the final four minutes of the quarter to pull within three points at 33-30. Raethke scored seven of those points.
Spring Valley’s full-court press continued to give Pepin-Alma fits at the start of the fourth quarter as the Eagles committed two turnovers leading to layups and a 37-30 deficit.
Pepin-Alma’s first basket of the fourth quarter came on a 3-pointer by Carroll at 2:39 but the damage was already done. Spring Valley made 6 of 6 free throws in the final two minutes to seal the victory.
Effort and execution were lacking for the Eagles in the fourth quarter and with a young team consistency continues to be an issue, Mueller said.
“We’re definitely going to have to work at that,” he said. “Both game to game and quarter to quarter. That’s been our problem.”
Pepin-Alma faces Eau Claire Immanuel Lutheran Friday in Eau Claire.