Warrior boys at full strength, pick up two conference wins last week

This Southland player found himself surrounded by Warrior defenders during Caledonia's 44-42 win last Thursday night. Caledonia players include Matt Petersen (3), Ryan Eppen (20), Nathan Rohrer (14) and Kennan Bruening (25). Photo by Zach Thomas

By Charlie Warner
Argus News Editor

The Caledonia boys basketball team improved their season record to 5-4 last week with two Three Rivers Conference wins over Dover-Eyota (55-37) on Jan. 3 and Southland (44-42) on Jan. 5.

“Last week was a big week for us,” coach Josh Diersen said. “We’re finally healthy and have everyone playing. We played very good defense, holding D-E to 37 points and Southland to 42 and beat a very

After being sidelined since the state championship football game six weeks ago with a broken arm, senior point guard Josh Lampert was back on the court last week. Photo by Zach Thomas

good Southland team, which only has two losses.”

Warriors 55, D-E 37

The Warriors started out cold in their Jan. 3 road game at Dover-Eyota. And it showed, as they only scored 18 points in the first half. They did play good defense, however, and held the Eagles to just 13 points in the first half.

Caledonia found its range in the second half, as they scored 34 points, while holding D-E to 24 for the 18-point win.

“It was great having Josh (Lampert) back,” Diersen said about the senior guard who broke his hand in the state football championship game six weeks ago. “Josh brings a great energy to the game. And being our point guard, he’s able to take a little pressure off our other guards.”

Lampert had a big night in his first game of the season, as he had a team-high 11 points. He also had nine steals, five rebounds and five assists. Eric Houdek had seven points and seven rebounds, Nate Rohrer had seven points and five rebounds, Alex Varney had six points and seven rebounds, Houston Halverson had five points and four rebounds, Ryan Eppen had five points and a team-high 10 rebounds, Kennan Bruening and Willie Cordes each had four points, Ryan Frank had three points and Matt Petersen and Andrew Kilger both had two points.

The Warriors made 14 of 24 free throws (58 percent) and were 3 of 14 (21 percent) from three point land. They had 19 turnovers in the game.

“We played more of an up-tempo game with Josh back,” Diersen noted. “And we really hit the boards

Ryan Eppen made sure this Rebel shot didn't make it to the basket during Caledonia's two-point win over Southland last week. Photo by Zach Thomas

with 43 rebounds, including 12 offensive boards.”

Warriors 44, Southland 42

The local cagers provided a very entertaining game for the Caledonia fans last Thursday night, as Josh Lampert drove the lane with seconds left to score the winning basket for a 44-42 win. The Warriors handed the Rebels just their second loss of the season.

Visiting Southland took an early lead and held a 21-16 advantage at the end of the first half.

Caledonia out-scored the Rebels 28-21 in the second half for the two-point win.

“We had a cold night shooting,” Diersen said. “But we played very solid defense in holding a team as

Willie Cordes (11) goes up for a shot over two Southland defenders, as Ryan Eppen (20) moves in for a possible rebound. Photo by Zach Thomas

good as Southland is to just 42 points. We did a good job of rebounding too.”

Lampert led the team in scoring with 14 points. The senior guard also had five steals and five assists. Bruening also hit double figures with 10 points. He had seven rebounds and three steals. Eppen had four points and six rebounds, Rohrer had four points, two steals and two assists, Houdek had four points and three rebounds, Cordes and Varney both had two points and Halverson and Kilger had one point.

The Warriors hit 9 of 17 (52 percent)  from the charity stripe, just 1 of 14 treys and 16 of 43 (37 percent) from the field. They had 15 turnovers.

Up next

Finally back to full strength, the Warriors will now face a tough schedule. On Jan. 10 they travel to Fillmore Central, Jan. 13 they face Rushford-Peterson on the road and Jan. 17 they host PEM.