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Late rally powers Blue Devils past Lakers

PEPIN -- In game of spurts, Plum City had the most important run of Friday's game with rival Pepin -- the final one -- in posting a 41-31 victory.

An 8-2 run late in the fourth quarter gave the Blue Devils a 10-point win over the Lakers. Plum City improves to 10-7 overall and 9-7 in the Dunn-St. Croix Conference. Pepin falls below the .500 mark at 9-10 overall and 8-9 in the conference.

Plum City surged out to an 11-2 lead early in the second quarter before a 13-4 Laker spurt caught the halftime deficit to 17-15. That momentum continued early in the second half as a 7-0 run put Pepin in front 22-17.

Both teams struggled on offense in what was a physical, defensive contest.

"We missed a lot of good looks at the basket," Pepin coach Josh Michlig said. "A lot of good shots we took just didn't fall. They played a box-in-one defense on Josh (Murray) and that's a defense we've struggled with all season. But once Phil (McGovern) was able to penetrate in the lane off of drives and dish the ball, were able to have more movement to our offense and the shots began to fall."

But the Lakers' offense and defense fell apart midway through the third quarter. The Devils' offense clicked into gear to go on a 14-0 run over the third and fourth quarters for a 31-22 advantage.

"We were stagnant on offense for much of the game," Plum City coach Wayne Radle said. "But once we were able to spread the floor out and drive in on them, then we were able to be effective."

The story of the game though was Plum City's defense. The Blue Devils held Pepin without single point until the one-minute mark of the first quarter. They also held the Lakers' leading scorer, Murray, to just seven points for the game, one of his lowest outputs of the season. Kevin Haglund led the Lakers in scoring with 10 points.

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