Marathon pulls away in second half to beat Columbus Catholic boys basketball

Posted on 08 January 2018 by paul


This story is sponsored by: High Street Salon, Spa & Travel

By Steve Pilz

MARSHFIELD – Perennial heavyweights Marathon and Marshfield Columbus Catholic, both highly-ranked in their respective divisions, went at it at Marshfield Columbus Catholic High School on Monday night and they didn’t disappoint.

In the end, Marathon’s size and strength won out as the Red Raiders downed the Dons 78-63.

The Red Raiders, ranked fifth in the state by in Division 4, and Columbus ranked second in Division 5, each came into the game with just one loss and a nine-game winning streak.

The Dons (9-2) ran out to an early lead led by Jarred Mandel’s eight points, which included a pair of 3-pointers, but Marathon had an answer with about 8 minutes left in the first half. That’s when the visitors caught fire, hitting seven consecutive shots that included four 3-pointers and three in a row at one point.

That hot streak propelled the Raiders (11-1) to a four-point lead at the half at 38-34.

“They had some guys hit some threes in that first half,” said Columbus coach Joe Konieczny. “We got up 10 or 11 and they hit some big outside shots. We were a little wary of their shooters after that.”

Perhaps with an eye on that outside shooting, the Dons failed to protect the rim and the 6-foot-5 Nathan Stoffel went wild after intermission, making 7 of 8 shots in the second half. He was 11-for-15 from the field in the game with a game-high 23 points.

“Then they got Stoffel a touch every time down,” Konieczny said. “He just physically did anything he wanted to do. It’s a really good team we played and we can definitely learn from it.”

Stoffel’s teammate Carter Hanke pitched in 17 points on 7 of 13 shooting and Donovan Free added 12.

The Dons ended up playing catch-up and had a hard time with the Red Raiders’ length, settling for 3-pointers of which they made just 9 of 31.

The Raiders seem to pay a lot of attention to Nick Malovrh and rightly so, as the sharp-shooter came into the contest averaging 20.3 points per game. Malovrh was held to just three points in the first half, finishing with 15 for the game on 5 of 17 shooting. Mandel added 15 on 6 of 15 shooting and Noah Taylor added 13.

“We schedule these games because we want to play teams like Marathon,” Konieczny said. “I think our nonconference schedule is going to benefit us long term.”

Columbus Catholic returns to Cloverbelt Conference East Division action Thursday at Loyal. Columbus is 6-0 and Loyal 5-0 in conference play.

Red Raiders 78, Dons 63
Marathon 38 40 – 78
Columbus Catholic 34 29 – 63
Justin Lemke 5, Clarke Mouw 3, Kaiden Turnquist 9, Cameron Schilling 9, Nathan Stoffel 23, Carter Hanke 17, Donovan Free 12. FG: 28-51. 3-pointers: 8-19 (Turnquist 2, Lemke, Mouw, Schilling, Hanke). FT: 16-27. Turnovers: 10. Fouled out: none. Record: 11-1.
COLUMBUS CATHOLIC (63): Nick Malovrh 15, Bryce Fuerlinger 5, Noah Taylor 13, Ethan Meece 6, Noah Hansen 9, Jarred Mandel 15. FG: 25-61, 3-pointers: 9-31 (Malovrh 5, Mandel 3, Taylor). FT: 4-7. Turnovers: 13. Fouled out: Hansen. Record: 9-2.

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