By Charlie Warner
Argus News Editor
The Caledonia boys basketball team went on the road last week to take on two very good Three Rivers Conference teams. They lost to Kingsland 74-53 on Jan. 24 and then rebounded for a win at Chatfield 70-53 on Friday night.
The split last week brought the Warriors’ TRC record to 6-5 and their season record to 8-6.
Kingsland 74, Warriors 53
The Warriors spotted a good Kingsland team nine points to open the game last Tuesday night in Spring Valley. The Warriors turned the ball over the first three times they had it and Kingsland responded with nine straight points.
The Warriors battled back and got within four points several times in the first half, but the home-standing Knights had a scoring run right before the half and led 36-27 at the intermission.
The Kingsland lead remained around 10 points for much of the second half, and then the Knights put together another scoring run to win the game going away by 21 points.
“You just can’t let a good team like Kingsland jump out to a nine point lead, especially on the road and hope you can get back into the game,” coach Josh Diersen said. “We just weren’t prepared at the beginning of the game and we also had a rough night shooting.”
The Warriors shot just 38 percent from the field and made 5 of 21 treys (23 percent) and 4 of 11 free throws (36 percent).
They turned the ball over 24 times and had 24 rebounds.
Josh Lampert led the Warriors with 16 points, eight rebounds, four assists and two steals. Alex Varney also had 16 points. Nathan Rohrer had 10 points and three assists, Andy Kilger had eight points and three assists, Kennan Bruening had six points and three rebounds, Willie Cordes had four points, four rebounds, five assists and two steals, Ryan Eppen had four points and four rebounds, Kevin Lapham had four points and one rebound and Eric Houdek had two points and four rebounds.
Warriors 70, Chatfield 53
The Warriors used a big second half to overcome a two point halftime deficit to defeat the Gophers at Chatfield Friday night.
Chatfield’s Nate Skare nailed five treys in the first half to give the Gophers a 30-28 lead. But some defensive adjustments made at halftime shut the sophomore guard down and Caledonia out-scored the Gophers 42-23 in the second half for the 17-point margin of victory.
“We played some good defense, especially in the second half,” Diersen said. “Once we shut Skare down, we were able to slow down their offense.
“Chatfield has a good, solid team and it’s tough in this conference to win on the road. I thought the kids did a good job against Chatfield. We made the necessary adjustments at halftime and outplayed them in the second half,” Diersen added.
“We only had nine turnovers in this game,” Diersen pointed out. “That was huge. I was very happy with the way the kids picked it up after losing to Kingsland and coming back to play well at Chatfield.”
The Warriors shot much better in the Chatfield game. They shot 41 percent from the field, made 8 of 19 treys (42 percent) and were 6 for 6 from the free throw line.
Lampert had another big night for the Warriors. The senior guard had 17 points, six rebounds, seven assists, four steals and three blocked shots. Cordes also hit double figures with 15 points and three rebounds. Kilger had eight points and four rebounds, Rohrer had five points, Lapham had four points and Bruening and Houdek both had two points.
The Warriors host a very tough St. Charles team on Jan. 31 and then entertain Lewiston-Altura Friday night. Caledonia plays three games this week, as they will travel to Decorah Saturday for a 6:30 p.m. tip-off.