Joe Schulte and Garrett Mertens delivered two three-point shots apiece to spark the Bulldogs to a 54-44 win against Deuel on January 26 at the Milbank Armory. Schulte downed 19 points and added six rebounds. He also aided the defense with a block. Mertens followed with 10 points and seven rebounds.
Jaxson Wildung put up nine points, pulled down seven rebounds, and managed two steals. Yohanna Awjanga stood strong with a block, put up four points, and controlled four rebounds. Eli Johnson added six points and five rebounds. Justus Osborn collected six points, including a nice bucket from three-point land. He brought down three rebounds.
Logan Diede, head coach for the Bulldogs, said, “My boys did a great job of doing what needed to be done to get the win. More importantly, we got better in the process. They played hard, matched physicality, and battled through adversity. We rebounded really well, particularly in the second half.”
“Everyone stepped up at one time or another throughout the game,” Diede commented. “Joe really brought the physical performance we needed with his finishing and rebounding. Jaxson and Garrett were also active on the boards and had very timely scoring down the stretch. Eli gave us big minutes off the bench in the middle defensively and protected the rim. He got after loose balls when we really needed it.”
“It was also great to get added guard depth with Justus Osborn returning. I was very pleased with how locked-in our bench was all night. They lifted us up with their energy and their talk,” he added. “The home atmosphere in the gym was fantastic. There’s no better place to play than in front of an energetic Milbank crowd!”
The Bulldogs shot 43 percent from the floor. They connected on one third of their three-point attempts. They also landed 13 of 21 from the free throw line for 62 percent. At times, Milbank struggled to maintain control of the ball and lost possession 17 times. “I would’ve liked to have our turnovers much lower than they were, and they will need to be moving forward, Diede commented, “but our toughness defensively and rebounding allowed us to overcome that.”
Gavin Beck was the leading scorer for the Cardinals. He recorded 16 points and seven rebounds. Braydon Simon made 11 points. Trey Malland had eight points, one rebound, and six steals. Ronnie Begalka was credited with four points, five rebounds, and two blocks. Owen Quail made two points and four rebounds. Ricky Berndt added three points and a rebound.
Deuel recorded 31 percent from the floor, including 19 percent from beyond the arc. The Cardinals landed just nine of 20 free throws for 45 percent.
What’s next for the Milbank cagers? The Bulldogs meet the Hamlin Chargers at the Milbank Armory on Monday, January 30.
JV Game—Milbank 47 vs. Deuel 37 Bryan Meyer put up 15 points and Emmett Hanson rallied with 10 to lead the Milbank JV team’s offense. Josh Pederson and Mason Meister added five apiece. Meister also nicked two steals. Every Bulldog on the floor took their turn in rebounding to help defeat the Deuel Cardinals 47-37 at the Milbank Armory on January 26.
Meyer contributed four rebounds. Jack Howard, Meister, Hanson, and Este Abrego-Gonzales each brought down three. Braylen Bowsher grabbed two. Pederson and Sebastian Hooth nabbed one apiece.
The Bulldogs knocked in 46 percent of their shots, including 21 percent from beyond the arc. The Milbank boys downed two of four free throws for 50 percent.
Rob Begalka scored 15 points and added nine rebounds for the Cardinals. Gabe Sather had 10 points and seven rebounds. Jaxon Peterrens made seven points and a rebound. Garret Olson and Caden Firnesand each contributed two points and two rebounds.
The Cardinals brought down 37 percent of their shots, including 21 percent from long range. They hit four of 12 free throws for just over 33 percent.
What’s next for Milbank? The varsity and JV Bulldogs meet the Hamlin Chargers on Monday, January 30, at the Milbank Armory.
Photos: Garrett Mertens and Yohanna Ajwanga execute the pick and roll. Justus Osborn looks to make a pass.