Spartans corral Breck

Prologue
Its a rare night in February where I get to see a couple of teams I haven't seen all year as I decide to take in St. Paul Academy at Breck.  Breck 10-9, 6-5 coming in.  SPA 5-15, 2-9 with only 2 seniors on the roster.  5 underclassmen starting between the 2 teams tonight.  Breck won the first meeting 61-42 in mid-December.  Nothing like a small crowd totally silent for the national anthem and then a cell phone goes blaring.  I'm told there's this thing called the OFF button that works awfully well. Always have to like the supersized hot dog.  We also get supermom at halftime handing out signs and pompoms for the students.  They were late arriving after the early Breck girls hockey game just next door.  And a Did You Know answer for the day.  BSM's Sanjay Lumpkin attended Breck through 8th grade.

Song of the Day
Blues Brothers - Rawhide

Game Time
Worth noting that Breck was without 2nd leading scorer Joey Yared in this one.  Soph point guard Spencer Egly gets SPA off to a 9-2 start wtih a pair of drives and a 3 ball.  9-2 SPA at the 13:01 mark and Breck uses their 2nd timeout.  Jeff Lurie behind the back and John Culliton converts.  SPA counters with 2 before a 7-0 Breck run.  Lurie finishes that spurt with a steal for 2 and his own 3.  16-14 Breck at the 6:43 mark.  Soph Josh Gray returning to the SPA lineup tonight after sitting out with a concussion.  He nails back to back 3s and then grabs his own missed 3 for a layup and SPA is back on top 23-17.  But he sits the last 3:07 with 2 fouls.  Egly gets a skip pass for 3 just before the half.  27-24 SPA at the break.

Gray then heats up in the 2nd half.  Inside out for a 3, then a steal for a pullup jumper.  That counters 8th grader Will Culliton's pair of 3s.  Gray on the offensive glass for a free throw.  34-30 SPA with 13:34 left.  Then Lurie with a pair of free throws and a pair of really nice bounce passes for layups.  36-34 Breck with 11:29 left and SPA needs time.  Lurie then steps back for 3 to push the lead to 5 with 10:40 left.  Sam Dicke starts to get going with a pullup and Gray with a steal that leads to him nailing a 3.  Lurie counters with a 1 bounce jumper and 2 more.  Those sandwich another Dicke drive to the lane.  43-41 Breck with 7:45 left.  Then SPA breaks through.  Gray with his 5th 3 of the night and 2 free throws for 14 of the 19 SPA points in the half.  Then Dicke driving again for 2 followed by a runner for a 3 point play.  Then its Dicke inside out to Egly for 3 with 5:02 left.  Its a 13-0 SPA run and Breck needs a timeout down 54-43.  Dicke on the post and he scores again.  That's a hand in 10 straight SPA points.  56-44 SPA with 4:20 left.  Breck gets a steal and can't convert the layup, then a missed front end on their next chance.  Down 11 with 3:07 left and they won't threaten again.  SPA makes 6 free throws in a row before missing 9 of 12 to keep things slightly interesting.  SPA wins 67-51.

Post Game
For Breck, Jeff Lurie leads the way with 19 points and his play gave Breck that 5 point lead with 10+ left.  Nick Hoffman with 7 of his 11 points in the 2nd half.  8th grader Will Culliton is a nice piece to build around for the future.  Breck falls to 10-10 overall, 6-6 in the Tri-Metro.  Tough loss for the Mustangs as they're in a battle with Trinity and Minnehaha for the 4 seed in section 4AA.  Good news they play both teams on the remaining schedule.  Bad news is that both are on the road.  3 tough ones at home before that with DeLaSalle, archrival Blake, and Roosevelt.

Soph SG Josh Gray with 27 points (box says 26, but I'm taking my totals) in his 1st game back.  5 3s and he turned at least 2 steals into points when they weren't breakaways.  Soph PG Spencer Egly with the hot start to finish with 18 points.  Sam Dicke 17 points (again I'll take my totals instead of the box) and 6 rebounds on my sheet.  He came up big during the 13-0 run that ultimately put the game away.  SPA now 3-9, 6-15 overall.  I'm looking at them for the #9 seed in #4AA. The win breaks a stretch where they had lost 8 out of 9.  They're at Brooklyn Center and at DeLaSalle next week.

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