The Clinton Herald, Clinton, Iowa

January 22, 2014

Defense big key for Irish

By Zach James Herald Assistant Sports Editor
The Clinton Herald

---- — CLINTON — Prince of Peace posted 63 points on the Midland Eagles on Tuesday night, but it was the second-half defense that had the boys basketball team buzzing after its 63-42 win.

While there was lots of scoring in the first half, with the halftime score being 33-30 in favor of the Irish, the third quarter was anything but high scoring for the Eagles.

The Irish held the Eagles to one field goal in the third quarter and five points. They threw a lot of looks at Midland, giving them trouble, especially in the second half.

“With (Dalton) Harms scoring the way he’s capable of, we did a great job in our second-half defense,” Irish coach Gerry Murphy said. “I thought our defense propelled our offense, which both ends of the floor were very solid, and it was a great team win for us.”

The Irish went into halftime knowing they could play better defense.

“We weren’t happy with how our defense was,” senior Caleb Kitteringham said. “We knew we could come out and play with more intensity, and we did.”

Shots certainly fell for the Irish from not just one or two guys. Four scored in double digits.

Nic Roth led the team with 20 points on nine field goals and two free throws. All nine baskets came from inside the paint, and four of the nine came in the first quarter. He made two baskets in the third quarter, finishing it off with one basket in the fourth quarter.

Lucas Laufenberg scored 16 points on Tuesday. Half of those points came from the free-throw line as he went a perfect 8-of-8, all in the second half.

Quin Schnier and AJ Williams had 10 points each. Williams had the only two 3-pointers for the Irish, while Schnier put up six of his 10 on layups in the fourth quarter.

“It was an all-around team effort; I was pleased with our performance tonight,” Murphy said.

Back on Dec. 10 in Wyoming, Midland defeated Prince of Peace 53-39. The Irish scored just four points in the third quarter that night whereas they scored 12 in the third quarter Tuesday and 18 in the fourth quarter. The loss more than a month ago weighed heavily on the Irish playing Midland for the second time this year.

“We played with a chip on our shoulder tonight,” Schnier said. “We didn’t want them to come on our home floor and beat us the way they did at their place.

“Coach kept saying to us at halftime to play every possession like it could be a game-winner, and that’s what we did with our defense in the second half.”

PRINCE OF PEACE 63, MIDLAND 42

MIDLAND (4-7) — Connor Harms 1 0-0 3, Brandon Dirks 0 1-2 1, Ben Carstensen 4 0-0 8, Dawson Paulsen 0 0-0 0, Skylar Mullins 0 0-0 0, Alex Martens 1 0-0 3, Dalton Harms 8 5-8 22, Hagan Ackley 1 0-0 2, Landon Gailbreath 0 1-2 1, Trace Jensen 0 0-0 0, Cody Tracy 0 0-0 0, Colton Dirks 1 0-0 2. Totals 16 7-12 42.

PRINCE OF PEACE (6-6) — Quin Schnier 5 0-0 10, Lucas Laufenberg 4 8-8 16, Devin Bly 0 0-0 0, AJ Williams 4 0-0 10, Caleb Kitteringham 2 1-2 5, Jacob Jankowski 0 0-0 0, Nic Roth 9 2-2 20, Seth Moeller 1 0-0 2, Devin Bilek 0 0-0 0, Andrey Drury 0 0-0 0, Will Andresen 0 0-0 0, Aedan Marlowe 0 0-0 0. Totals 25 11-15 63.

Midland 16 14 5 7 — 42

Prince of Peace 17 16 12 18 — 63

3-point goals — Midland 3 (C. Harms, D. Harms, Martens); Prince of Peace 2 (Williams 2). Total fouls — Midland 14, Prince of Peace 9. Fouled out — None.