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BEA boys get off to strong start

By Staff | Dec 9, 2018

Cameron Anderson goes up for an easy layup against the New Ulm Eagles last Thursday night.

Blue Earth Area made it three victories in a row with a 61-57 win over the visiting New Ulm Eagles in boys basketball action last Thursday, Dec. 6.

“New Ulm played a very physical game,” Buccaneer head coach Colby Swanson explained. “I felt like our team did a good job in matching their physical play and hustling throughout the entire game.”

There were 10 lead changes in the first half. The Eagles held a 28-25 lead until Cameron Anderson’s shot from behind the arc knotted the score at 28-28 with 40 seconds left in the opening half. The teams would remain tied at 28 as the first half ended.

New Ulm opened the second half by converting a traditional three point play to take the lead. Anderson answered with his own long-range bomb, which ignited a 10-0 Buccaneer surge, putting the maroon and gold on top by a score of 38-31.

The Eagles mounted a comeback and cut the Buccaneer lead to one point at 40-39. This time it was Carter Bell who drained the three-pointer from the right side of the key to repel the Eagles and extend the BEA lead to four points at 43-39.

Grant Strukel gets a shot off during the game.

New Ulm scored the next four points to take the lead 44-39. It was the last time the Eagles would hold the lead in the game. Austin Thielfoldt drove the lane for two points followed by another three from Bell to give the Bucs the lead for good.

Bell showed his tenacity on the next Buccaneer possession as he drove to the basket only to miss the shot. He battled to secure the offensive rebound and put the ball up again, this time the ball fell through the hoop to give the Buccaneers a 50-44 lead.

The Eagles called time out and when play resumed they proceeded to score five consecutive points to again pull within one point of the Bucs at 50-49.

Anderson and Grant Strukel each scored to increase the Buccaneer lead to five points. Strukel then made a nice defensive play, drawing a charge to give the ball back to the Bucs. Caelan Sanders was fouled as he brought the ball up the court. He converted both ends of a one and one free throw to make the score 56-49 in favor of the Bucs with 3:12 left in the game.

“That was a big play by Strukel to take the charge,” Swanson said. “He was playing with four fouls at the time but made a great play.”

Carter Bell gets open for a shot over the New Ulm defense. Bell ended the game with 15 points.

New Ulm made one more run to pull within two points with 33 seconds left in the game. With the Eagles forced to foul to get the ball back, the Bucs were able to make enough free throws to win the game.

“Austin Thielfoldt deserves a lot of credit for the way he defended New Ulm’s big guy,” Swanson stated. “He gave away quite a few inches but did an outstanding job of guarding him.”

The balanced scoring exhibited by BEA in their first two games continued in this contest. Four players reached double figures led by Anderson with 20 points, followed by Bell with 15, Thielfoldt with 11 and Strukel with 10.

The win gives the Bucs a 3-0 overall record and 1-0 in the Big South Conference.

BEA 70, LCWM 44

A well balanced scoring attack helped the Blue Earth Area boys basketball team engineer a 70-44 win over the Lake Crystal-Wellcome Memorial Knights last Monday night in Lake Crystal.

Four Buccaneer players reached double figures with Cameron Anderson leading the way with 14 points. The other players reaching double digits were Austin Thielfoldt with 13 points, Carter Bell with 11 and Caelan Sanders with 10.

Parker Kienitz added eight points and Grant Strukel six in the winning effort.

Anderson also had five rebounds while Thielfoldt contributed five assists. Strukel led the team with three steals.

Blue Earth Area led by seven at halftime and put the game away by outscoring the Knights 40-21 in the second half.

The victory improved the Bucs’ record to 2-0 this season.

BEA 66, Maple River 50

The Blue Earth Area boys basketball team opened their season on the road with a 66-50 victory over the Maple River Eagles.

It was a good shooting night for the Bucs, who connected on 18 of 27 two-point shots, while hitting eight of their 18 three-point attempts.

BEA held a 35-23 lead at the half. They built on their lead by outscoring the Eagles 31-27 in the second half.

Cameron Anderson tallied 17 points on seven of 10 shooting while making three of four free throw attempts. Carter Bell also poured in 17 points for the Bucs. Bell connected on three shots from behind the ark while adding four two-pointers. Austin Thielfoldt also was hot, making three of five three-pointers on his way to a 16 point performance.

Grant Strukel led the team in assists with seven. Thielfoldt pulled down six rebounds while Sam Keister ended the game with five rebounds.