Huskies down Bucs, 67-51
The Jackson County Central boys basketball team never trailed Tuesday against Blue Earth Area.
The Huskies cruised to a 67-51 non-conference victory.
The game was the regular season finale for the Bucs who finished their schedule with a 7-16 overall mark.
In the final game of the regular season, BEA took the floor at Pemberton Auditorium for the first time this year.
The Bucs played in the different venue because of a girls playoff game against Medford taking place at Blue Earth Area High School the same evening.
The change in scenery was not favorable to the Buccaneers, who struggled early on shooting, despite dominating the boards.
“We came out playing extremely hard,” BEA head coach Gary Holmseth says. “We didn’t get rewarded for our effort by making shots and we lost some energy because of it.”
The Bucs were within striking distance midway through the first half, trailing 14-9 when they went ice cold from the field.
BEA didn’t score in the next six minutes of play allowing JCC to go on an 11-0 run.
The point swing firmly established the Huskies large lead, which ballooned to 20 points (39-19) at halftime.
The comfortable lead was sustained during the second half with the Huskies answering every attempt at a Buccaneer run.
The closest BEA came was during their last attempt at a rally.
Trailing 60-42, Isaac Darrington put in a layup and Dallas Barslou exploded for a five-point burst to put the Bucs within 11 at 60-49 with two minutes and 20 seconds remaining.
The Huskies fired back, making critical free throws down the stretch to seal the 67-51 victory.
BEA was led by Barslou who scored 20 points, including four threes.
Sam Lee was the second leading scorer, putting in 10 points and snagging seven rebounds.
Darrington rounded out BEA’s leading scorers and was two points shy of a double-double, scoring eight points and recording 14 rebounds.
Jackson County Central was powered by the duo of Jon Harmening and Darnell Taylor-Breck.
Harmening scored 16 and Taylor-Breck had 15 to lead the Huskies in the scoring department.
As a team, BEA was 20 of 53 from the field and 7 of 8 from the free-throw line.
Despite struggling from the free-throw line (12 of 23), JCC was able to go a respectable 24 of 46 (52 percent) from the field.
The consistent shooting proved to be the difference in the game as BEA couldn’t keep pace on the scoreboard despite commanding a 33 to 24 rebounding edge.
The final regular season game was the last home game for three seniors from BEA.
Sam Lee, Brady Anderson and Jake Wagner capped their careers wearing the home maroon and gold colors.
Holmseth says all three have contributed immensely to the program.
“Tonight we paid tribute to three great kids who represented Blue Earth Area in many positive ways,” he says. “I am very proud of them and I just wish we could have gotten them a win for their final home game.”
Lee, Wagner and Anderson are all three-sport athletes and have been involved with basketball their entire high school careers.
The Bucs honored another “senior” Tuesday night by recognizing long-time team manager Jim “Jet” Govern.
“No person has loved Buccaneer sports more than Jim Govern,” Holmseth says. “Jet is not retiring and he will be back although, let it be noted that Jet is a “senior” citizen now.”