The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

Sports

December 8, 2012

'Nice run' lifts Preston boys

PRESTON — With the game tied at 6 midway through the first quarter, Preston went on a 7-0 run Friday night.

From there, the Trojans (3-0, 3-0 Big East Conference) never let Camanche get closer than three in a 53-48 conference boys basketball game.

“We put a nice run together,” Preston senior Colton Bormann said. “We got them with the half-court trap. That gave them some problems. We got some steals and easy buckets. It was good momentum for us.”

Chase Zaruba — who scored a team-high 14 points, all in the first half — scored all seven of Preston’s points during that early run.

The Trojans pushed their lead to 36-22 on back-to-back baskets by Logan Wilhelm early in the third quarter.

“We dug ourselves a hole that was tough to get out of,” Camanche coach Josh Davis said. “We battled hard and kept our composure pretty well. Our shots weren’t falling early, and we didn’t get a couple breaks at the end. But give them credit. They made free throws and some big shots at the end.”

Preston took a 45-34 lead early in the fourth quarter on back-to-back baskets by Brett Earles. Then Mitchell Roth took over for Camanche.

Roth scored 11 consecutive Camanche points to cut Preston’s lead to 49-45.

“Mitch did a great job of getting to the basket and attacking,” Davis said. “I want to see more of that.”

Roth hit a 3-pointer and drove to the basket four times, either hitting pull-up jumpers or layups during that stretch of 2:14. He finished with a game-high 23 points.

After Roth put a big dent into Preston’s lead, Bormann gave the Trojans more breathing room.

He drove to the basket — which he did often in the second half — and made a layup to push the lead to six.

“We ran an iso play,” Bormann said. “My job was to drive and get a layup if I could. If not, we had four shooters who I could kick it out to.”

Devin Norman made a 3-pointer for Camanche to halve Preston’s lead with 30 seconds to play. Preston’s Colin Larson made a pair of free throws for the final margin.

Camanche cut Preston’s lead to six or fewer three times after it was established, before getting it down to four in the final minutes.

“When they made a push, we had to do our job — execute and take of the ball,” Bormann said. “We just had to keep our composure. If you don’t keep your composure, you’re going to crumble.”

This was the first time in three games that Preston scored fewer than 80 points.

“Defense is something we always hang our hat on,” Davis said. “I’m not happy with the loss. But I am happy with how we defended.”

Davis said the Indians went in with the goal of playing physical against Preston.

“A lot of teams in our conference play soft zone,” Davis said. “Our bread and butter is being physical. We wanted to get up into them. We played with our feet. I think they got a little tired, but we ran out of time.”

Bormann said he didn’t know if the physical play bothered the Trojans, but it did slow them down and take them out of their normal tempo.

“They did a good job defensively in the second half, but we’re pretty happy with the outcome,” he said. “That was probably one of the most physical games I’ve ever been a part of. You can’t worry about the referees or what they are or aren’t calling, though. That messes you up. You’ve just got to play through it.”

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