When and Where: Feb. 2 at St. Croix Falls
Outcome: St. Croix Falls 64, Unity 34
Summary: St. Croix Falls used to play the Unity Eagles regularly when both teams were members of the Lakeland conference. Now with SCF in the Heart O’North the game is a non-conference matchup but it is still exciting as the familiar foes meet again. The Saints were hot from behind the arc in this one and scorched the nets in the first half on their way to a 44-15 lead at intermission.
Highlights: SCF connected 12 times from behind the arc with three each by Connor Olson and Jared Lessman, and two from Dayo Oye, Oliver Schmidt and Payton Christenson. Lessman led the team in scoring with 17 followed by Brady Belisle with 13 and Olson with 11.
Comments: “We came out fast and jumped to an early lead and continued to add to it throughout the first half,” St. Croix Falls Coach Chad Hall said. “We shot the ball very well but I was most impressed with our defense. We only gave up 15 points in the first half and a total of 34 for the game. We didn’t give up many easy buckets and rebounded very well too.”
When and Where: Feb. 4 at Spooner
Outcome: St. Croix Falls 71, Spooner 56
Summary: The Spooner Rails hung in the game into the second half before the Saints could put them away. Once again effective 3-point shooting helped SCF to the victory.
Highlights: The Saints connected seven times from ‘down town’ led by Lessman with four treys. Belisle connected twice from behind the arc and Oye once. Lessman led the team in scoring with 20 followed by Oye with 16, Olson with 14 and Belisle with 13.
Comments: “We were down a starter as Payton Christenson was hurt early in the Unity game,” Hall mentioned. “He is the second-leading scorer and a captain so we had to shuffle our rotation around a bit. The guys had another good shooting night and played some good defense. We created a lot of easy buckets off Spooner turnovers. It was a good team effort and everyone stepped up offensively and defensively with good effort all around. We hope to have Payton back in the line-up this week.”
When and Where: Feb. 6 at Bloomer
Outcome: St. Croix Falls 65, Bloomer 42
Summary: St. Croix Falls upped their HON record to 10-4 (13-5 overall) with a 23 point win over the Blackhawks. The Saints opened up a 15 point halftime lead and added eight more points to their victory margin after the break.
Highlights: The Saints once again were hot from behind the arc hitting a total of 10 treys. Oye connected four times, Belisle and Schmidt twice each with Olson and Lessman both adding one. Oye led the scoring with 23 followed by Belisle with 14 and Lessman with 11.
Comments: “Overall a very good effort on both ends of the court,” Hall said. “We shot the ball well and played very good pressure defense. We caused quite a few turnovers and disrupted Bloomer’s offense. Good balance of scoring with Dayo Oye leading the way.”
What this Means: SCF holds down the third spot in the HON trailing only Cameron and Northwestern in the 10-team conference.
Upcoming: St. Croix Falls will travel to Ladysmith on Feb. 11 and then to Cameron on the 13th to end HON play. The Saints open WIAA Regional action on Feb. 19th when they host the winner of the game between Elk Mound and Osseo-Fairchild.