Bay boys get back on track with tough OT win at Vincent
Blue Dukes at Nicolet for twinbill Friday
Sometimes its good to sweat one out a little.
And that's exactly what the Whitefish Bay boys basketball team did Saturday night, going into Milwaukee Vincent and pulling out a tough 60-55 overtime decision over the always difficult Vikings.
Coming on the heels of a surprisingly easy 67-40 win over North Shore opponent Milwaukee Lutheran the night before, Blue Dukes coach Kevin Lazovik was relieved to have both the team's two-game losing streak over with and his squad with some much needed wind at its back.
"Absolutely, it was good for us to win a close game," Lazovik said. "A good win against good competition at a tough place to play. That was nice because we've taken a few close ones on the chin."
With the two wins, the Blue Dukes improved to 6-4 in North Shore play and 12-5 overall after rough back-to-back defeats to league powers Germantown and Homestead.
Bay will now have an entertaining weekend, as they serve as the nightcap to a girls-boys doubleheader at Nicolet on Friday at approximately 7:30 p.m. and then, on Saturday, they are at Messmer at 2:30 p.m. in a nonconference tilt.
Lazovik likes this series of back-to-back games the Dukes are now playing.
"If you want to be successful in the (WIAA) tourney you have to be able to go back-to-back," he said.
And if you want to win close road games, you have to face some adversity like the Blue Dukes did against Vincent, coached by former Homestead mentor Marquis Hines.
Bay held a 39-34 lead going into the fourth quarter but the Vikings' full-court pressure defense finally wore the Blue Dukes down a little and the score was tied late at 47. Bay had a chance to win at the end of regulation.
"But we had an in-bounds play that we didn't execute very well and a tough floater with about a second go to go missed," Lazovik said.
However in the overtime, Bay got the advantage with an early Jake Casey 3-pointer. The Blue Dukes held the advantage most of the period, but it was still only a one-point game with 30 seconds to go. Bay finally broke the pressure and center Christian Lane got free for a clutch layup.
The Vikings missed a 3-pointer and then Lane hit two free throws to clinch it.
Lazovik said that the 6-7 Lane, despite his size, has been overlooked a bit this year. He had a huge game with a team-high 14 points and 12 rebounds.
"He's doing a lot of the dirty work for us," said Lazovik. "Grabbing rebounds, blocking shots, playing tough defense. All the little things that we need."
Lane got help from Miles Sigh and Isaiah Johnson with 13 points apiece and Joe Sherburne with nine.
Fast start against Lutheran
The win came right after a stunningly good effort against Lutheran. The Red Knights had been playing well of late, but the Blue Dukes never let them in the game, taking a 24-9 first quarter lead which they expanded to 38-17 at the break.
Nine different players scored for the Blue Dukes as Sherburne had 15, Sigh 14, Lane 10 and Rhashad Gray eight. Lazovik said that Gray provided a lot of energy this night including a couple big steals that led directly to layups.
Lazovik said he just wants the Blue Dukes to keep winning.
"And if we want to do that, we have to get better as a team," he said. "We want to play as well as we can down the stretch, get a good seed (in the WIAA tourney) and hopefully get a few home games.
"Because I still believe that if we play well, we can beat anyone out there."
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