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Logger boys rally to defeat Troy, 34-26

by Brad Fuqua & Western News
| January 18, 2011 11:17 AM

Trailing 22-21 heading into the fourth

quarter, the Libby High School boys basketball team was looking for

a nice run over the final eight minutes to put away visiting

Troy.

The Loggers had reached a level of

frustration over the first three quarters with practically no

outside shooting. Still, Libby’s defense kept coming up big to keep

the Trojans from pulling away.

Then it happened. Over a two-minute

stretch of the fourth, Garrett Craig buried a three-pointer and

both Alex Cislo and James Hare scored inside to provide a bit of a

cushion. Troy could not keep pace the rest of the way and the

Loggers took a 34-26 victory.

Second-chance opportunities on the

offensive end helped the Loggers late.

“We got a little more aggressive. James

Hare and Alex Cislo got some offensive boards – that was big,” LHS

coach Wally Winslow said. “We talked about that, we actually have

not been rebounding the ball very well throughout the course of the

year. … We needed to get some offensive boards and the boys

responded.”

Troy was coming off a tough overtime

loss to Bigfork in which the Trojans had let a game slip through

their fingers in the fourth quarter. Coach Cory Andersen said the

same thing unfolded against Libby.

“We struggled in the fourth quarter

again. We’ve just had some games where we couldn’t hit shots when

we need to make them,” Andersen said. “I thought there was a point

in the third quarter where if we would’ve been able to hit some

shots, we could’ve extended the lead, maybe go up by five to eight

points and that would’ve made a difference going down the

stretch.”

Shooting woes plagued both schools in

the first quarter. Troy held a 6-4 lead behind four points from

Trent Cratty and two from Ryan Rayson. Libby had just two points

through most of the quarter on a hoop by Hare. Finally, Reese

Jensen found the net with 3 seconds on the clock to cut the deficit

to two points.

Early in the second, Hare scored

back-to-back buckets to give the Loggers their first lead. But Troy

responded with a 5-0 run – all of those points by junior Cory

Orr.

“It was a defensive battle there for

quite a while … nobody could make a shot,” Winslow said. “We were

2-for-21 from the three-point line, they were 1-for-18. I mean both

played zone and gave a lot of three-point looks but nobody could

hit water from a boat.”

Libby’s Kelly May hit a three-pointer

to tie the game, 11-11. By halftime, the two teams were tied, 15-15

with points by Libby’s Cislo and Micah Germany, and Troy’s Rayson

and Kody Hoffman.

Neither team really shot very well.

Some of that’s the defense, hard work on the defensive end,”

Andersen said. “Some of it was just neither team could hit shots

when they needed them.”

In the third quarter, Troy took a 20-15

lead at one point with a hoop by Hoffman and a three-pointer by

Orr. But the Trojans would score only six points the rest of the

game.

Troy still held a 22-21 lead going into

the fourth quarter.

Libby took the lead with 6:30 remaining

on Craig’s three. Ninety seconds later, Cislo hit and a short time

later, Hare scored for a 28-22 Logger lead.

Troy could not respond down the stretch

with its only field goal of the fourth quarter coming with 58

seconds left on a shot by Rayson. Cree Maloney’s free throws and

baskets by Hare and Cislo helped provide a late cushion.

Hare and Cislo combined for 20 points

to help offset an off day from the long-range shooters.

“They can carry us. Garrett and Kelly

and those guys, they’ve been shooting the ball from the perimeter

really well at times throughout the year and today was just an off

day,” Winslow said. “I keep telling them, shooters have to have a

short memory … shooters have to shoot is what I’m saying; the next

open look, it’s going to go in. They’ll be fine, they were

cold.”

Troy’s problems with possession also

played a role.

“We just turned the ball over too

much,” Andersen said. “And when we got turnovers, we’d turn it over

right back to them so it really didn’t help us any.

“I thought with our rebounding we were

pretty solid, defensively we were pretty solid,” Andersen added.

“Offensively, we just didn’t take advantage of the opportunities we

had and then in the fourth quarter, we gave up a few shots and they

got a few rebounds.”

Hare finished with a game-high 12

points. Orr led the way for Troy with 10 points.

Libby 34, Troy 26

Thursday at Ralph TateGymnasium,

Libby

Scoring by Quarters:

Troy   6 9 7 4—26

Libby 4 11 6 13—34

TROY (26)

Cory Orr 4 1-2 10, Rayson 2 2-2 6,

Ormiston 0 0-0 0, Hoffman 2 2-7 6, Cratty 1 2-2 4. Totals 9 7-13

26.

LIBBY (34)

Maloney 0 2-2 2, May 1 0-0 3, Craig 1

0-0 3, Cislo 4 0-0 8, Hare 6 0-6 12, Jensen 2 0-2 4, Germany 1 0-0

2. Totals 15 2-10 34.