• Keith Hjelle

Charger Boys Win Close One at CAM, 50-44

Updated: Jan 23

The ACGC boys' basketball team picked up a significant win last Thursday when it defeated CAM 50-44 in a game played in Anita. CAM is not a powerhouse team by any means . The Cougars record is 5-6 after its defeat at the hand of the Chargers.

So, why is this an important win for ACGC? Because the Chargers, who led through most of the game, maintained their poise and won a close game on the road. It was another building block for the boys' program.

The Chargers seemed to be in control most of the game, but never pulled away from the scrappy Cougar team. After a nip and tuck first quarter that ended with the Chargers leading 12-10, the visitors trailed by a 17-14 score midway through the second stanza. With the Kading brothers scoring nine points between them and Ben Marsh adding a three pointer, ACGC outscored its hosts 12-2 over the last 4:30 of the the quarter to take a 26-19 lead halftime.

Halfway through the third frame the Chargers held the Cougars scoreless for three minutes and increased their lead to 36-25. CAM then took is turn to go on a run and put up nine consecutive points to end the quarter with ACGC up by just two points, 36-34. Its "up for grabs" heading into the final eight minutes!

Clayton Wardyn's trey increased the lead to 39-34 early in the fourth quarter, but the Chargers then had another scoring drought that lasted for over four minutes. CAM was unable to take advantage, scoring only three points in the first five and a half minutes of the quarter.

The Chargers finally broke the ice when Brock Litter his what this observer thinks was the game changer. Although there were still over three minutes remaining in the game, and both teams would score more points, Littler's three pointer gave the Chargers a five point lead at 42-37, and ended the long dry spell.

CAM countered with is own three ball from Ethan Arp to close the gap to 42-40 with 2:39 to go, and the Cougars got within one point at 43-42 with just under two minutes showing on the clock. Down by one point and still trailing 43-42 with under a a minute to play, the Cougars began fouling, hoping the Chargers would not convert on its free throw tries.

Those hopes were dashed when ACGC converted on seven of eight free throws over the last fifty four seconds and the Cougars scored just one basket going down the stretch. And ACGC left with the prize! A hard earned win on a foreign court--makes for a good win.

"We did an excellent job taking care of the basketball, committing only four turnovers for the game, which I think is probably the lowest ever," Charger mentor Lance Kading commented after the game.

"We made a conscious effort to get Eli and Lucas to put pressure on CAM's interior defense. We feel like either one of these guys is a though one on one matchup for most defenders. So, we would have either high percentage looks in the paint or force the defense to help, in which case we could kick out to guys who were ready to shoot or drive.

"Brock and Clayton gave us some good minutes off the bench. They each knocked down big shots. And Brock made four of five three throws down the stretch, and also had a huge defensive play down the stretch that forced a five second violation."

Eli Kading led the Charger scoring with 18 points. Although Kading was the only Charger in double figures, Lucas Marsh added 8 points and Littler had 7. The Chargers shot 40% from the field (17 of 43) and 38% from behind the arc (6 of 16). Although they shot just 56% (10 of 18) from the free throw line, they hit those 7 of 8 going down the stretch. Lucas Marsh hauled down 8 rebounds, and Ben Marsh and Eli Kading each came up with three assists.

The victory improves the season record to 10 wins and 3 losses heading into a home contest with rival Panorama.

Score by Quarter:

ACGC 12 14 10 14--60

CAM 10 9 15 10--44

Individual statistics: (TP-REB-ASSTS-STLS) EKading (18-5-3-0) BMarsh (4-5-3-1) Crawford

(1-4-2-0) LMarsh (8-6-1-0) MKading (6-3-0-0) Wardyn (6-0-0-0) Littler (7-1-0-0) Weinkoetz

(0-0-0-0)

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