• Keith Hjelle

Charger Boys Open New Year With Win Over CRB

The ACGC boys' basketball team returned to action last night following the holiday break and came up with a 58-42 win over Coon Rapids-Bayard in a game played in Guthrie Center. The non-conference win improves the Charger record to 5-2 on the season, while the Crusaders fell to 3-4 overall.

Both teams had to work out some bugs in the early going, as it had been a full two weeks since either team had seen any action. Although the Chargers held an 11-7 lead after the first quarter, they connected on just four of fourteen shot attempts, three of which were from beyond the three point line. Eli and Miles Kading, as well as reserve Clayton Wardyn each connected from long distance. The Crusaders went four of eleven, as both teams struggled to find the basket.

The second quarter found the Crusaders warming up from the field, as they connected on eight of fourteen attempts. ACGC continued to struggle, scoring only three field goals out of fourteen tries. The Crusaders held a 24-20 lead at the intermission. For the half, ACGC shot just 25% from the floor.

The Charger shooting improved dramatically in the second half with unofficial statistics indication seventeen makes out of thirty shots. The team erupted for twenty five third quarter points, with Lucas Marsh tallying nine points in the quarter and Miles Kading netting seven. ACGC also picked things up on the defensive end, allowing the Crusaders just nine shots for the quarter. The Chargers managed to get nineteen shots off, connecting on eleven. The home team had a double digit lead after the third quarter at 45-33.

CRB went on a 6-0 run to open the final frame to get within six points at 45-39. After that the Charger defense allowed just one Crusader basket and a free throw in the last six and a half minutes of the game. A big three pointer from Brock Littler half way through the period gave the Chargers a 50-41 lead. ACGC outscored the visitors 13-3 in the last six minutes of the game.

Three Chargers scored in double figures with Eli Kading leading the way with 18 points. Miles Kading came up with 12 and Lucas Marsh had 11. The younger Kading scored a double double as he added 10 rebounds to his 12 points. Ben Marsh led the team in assists with 4 and Marsh and Wardyn each had 3 steals.

As a team the Chargers made 24 out of 58 shot attempts for 41% including 8 for 28 from beyond the arc. CRB actually shot a better percentage, making 17 of 34 attempts. However, with twenty four more shot attempts by the home team, ACGC outscored CRB from the field 56-38.

"We started out slow on offense," Charger coach Lance Kading commented. "But we were confident that it would come. In the third quarter we got some good looks and moved the ball well. We missed Charlie Crawford's energy, but Clayton Wardyn provided us with a spark.

"I thought our rebounding was decent, but we need to cut down on turnovers. Basically we felt comfortable, even after we fell behind at the beginning and when CRB made a brief run to start the fourth quarter."

The Chargers continue their home stand for the rest of the week, with three additional games on tap. Tonight Interstate 35 comes to town, followed by Woodward-Granger on Friday and Ex-EHK on Saturday afternoon.

Score by quarter:

CRB 7 17 9 9--42

ACGC 11 9 25 13--58

Individual Charger statistics: (TP-REB-ASTS-STLS) EKading (18-8-2-2) BMarsh (4-2-4-3)

LMarsh (11-4-2-2) MKading (12-10-2-2) Rogers (1-1-0-0) Wardyn (9-3-0-3) Littler (3-1-0-0)

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