With apologies to the EMAC, I venture outside The Kingdom for a section 8AAAA matchup between Rogers and St. Cloud Tech. Tech might be on the road but we still get an appearance from the famous Tech Super Fan. Always quality from the Super Fan. No food on tonight's menu as I get in an excess of potato skins and mozzarella sticks at my company Christmas party. Of course, I won't stay long enough to miss a game. I do manage to get in a bottle of Aquafina. Quality tunes on the PA but the announcer had the nerve to talk over today's classic.
Song of the Day
The Bangles - Walk Like An Egyptian
Number of Teams I've Seen: 61 (20 courts, 2 new, 1 TV game)
Beverage Ticker: 120 ounces (1390 calories) + 1 liter (250 calories) + 3 liters (0 calories) + 80 oz (0 calories.
26 days (21 possible game days), 35 games, 2 scrimmages added on, includes 1 TV replay
- Pepsi: 72 ounces (900 Calories) + 500 ml (210 Calories)
- Dr Pepper: 36 ounces (450 Calories)
- Sprite: 12 ounces (140 Calories)
- Water: 3 Liters + 80 ounces (0 Calories)
- Gatorade: 500 ml (40 Calories)
Pizza Ticker: 7
Walking Taco Ticker: 4
Rogers looks like they'll run away early. Will Alexander with a pair of 3s and Allen Wilson adds another bomb. Add in a Steffan Musoke hoops and the Royals are out to a 14-4 lead at the 13:12 mark. Tech would rally with a 16-6 spurt of their own. BIG Jack Mussman with a pair of inside hoops. Fellow big man Trevor Koenig would put back a miss and add another hoop to tie the game at 20 late in the half. Mitch Spilles with a hoop and a steal for 2 more. That helps Rogers a 26-22 halftime lead.
Tech's matchup zone really slowing the pace and they stick with it in the 2nd half. Tech scores 9 of the 1st 12 of the 2nd half with a Koenig hoop, 2 free throws on an offensive board and layup. Brevyn Spann-Ford sat the last 7 minutes of the 1st half with 2 fouls. His hoop ends that opening run and Tech leads 31-29 with 14:45 to play. Both teams, especially Rogers vs the zone hosting jumper after jumper to no success. Allen Wilson with a couple of drives to attack the zone (middle was very open all night) that lead to 2 assists. Then a turnover leads to a Wilson pass to Alexander for 2 free throws on the break. That ends a 10-2 Rogers run. 41-35 Royals with 7 minutes left. Spann-Ford with a free throw and then a couple extra passes find him for a wide open 3. Wilson attacks again for 2 free throws. A turnover leads to an Alexander attack for 2 more. Wilson back to the rack for a 3 point play with 2:11 left to push the lead to 7. Alexander puts Spann-Ford in the popcorn machine faking a 3 with 1:20 left and drives for a 3 point play. Rogers goes on to win 52-43.
Junior forwards Jack Mussman (6'5 and wide) and Trevor Koenig (6'10 and long) go for 12 each. Brevyn Spann-Ford adds 11. Tech with only 3 seniors on the roster and none saw playing time. The rotation was 5 juniors and 4 sophomores. The matchup zone was effective in slowing the pace against a Rogers team that is better getting up and down. The middle of the zone was a freeway though. Tech is now 4-4 overall. They resume Central Lakes play with games at Fergus Falls and Brainerd before Christmas.
Will Alexander leads Rogers with 11 of his 17 in the 2nd half. Mitch Spilles with 12. He was the guy seeing a ton of touches in the middle of the zone. Allen Wilson with 8 points playing the PG spot. His attacking the zone off the bounce in the 2nd half was critical. When Rogers attacked the zone, they were very effective. When they settled for jump shots, that was very ineffective and kept Tech in the game. Rogers was 15-20 at the line and only gave up 8-12 FTs. Rogers is now 4-3 overall. They host Bemidji on Friday. Then I'll be back on Saturday for the girls/boys district rivalry doubleheader vs Elk River on Saturday. The game also has 8AAAA section implications as they would like to be the 2 seed behind Maple Grove. Brainerd has already beaten Rogers and goes to Elk River later in the season. They will have a say in that race too.