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Cory Nietfeld of Ridgewater flies up the lane to score the last of his game-high 16 points after taking a pass from Tony Anderson. Tribune photo by Rand Middleton

Ridgewater impressive in opener

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West Central Tribune
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WILLMAR -- Ridgewater College made an impressive debut Tuesday night, jolting Northland College 80-60 in MCAC men's basketball.

"We've got way more weapons this year and a lot of depth," said sophomore post Tom Boike, who came off the bench to score seven points.

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Starting his third season as head coach, Bob Knutson's role was as much a traffic cop as master tactician.

Using 16 players in the first half alone, the Warriors bolted to an 8-0 lead and never let the Pioneers sniff the lead. It was 44-24 at the break.

No Warrior played more than 20 minutes, except Cory Nietfeld who played 20:30. Nietfeld, last year's top scorer, tallied 16 points by making 8-of-11 shots. Ben Moser, his former classmate at Paynesville, added 12 points and newcomer Adam Lindblad of Willmar hit for 11 points, plus a team-high five assists.

Thirteen Warriors scored at least one point and 10 had at least two rebounds among the team's total of 50.

"It's nice to finally play after five or six weeks of practice and then jump up 8-0 right away. It felt good," said Nietfeld, who also had a team-high nine rebounds.

Casey Sussenguth, a freshman center from Willmar, started and scored eight points with four rebounds and three assists.

Beau Bredeson, a freshman from Marshall, started at point guard.

Ridgewater hammered it inside with quick passes, but also looked dangerous from the outside. Bredeson, Moser, Lindblad, Phil Herkenhoff and starting off-guard Derek Eisenschenk all hit three-pointers.

It will be hard to give everyone playing time like last night, but that's a nice problem for a coach to have this early in the season. There's always some attrition during a season spanning four months.

The Pioneers, who shot 31 percent compared to the Warriors' 48 percent, were led by Gerald Anderson with 14 points, Reo Thomas with 11 and Nick Youmans with 10.

Ridgewater 80, Northland 60

Northland CC 24 36 -- 60

Ridgewater 44 36 -- 80

NORTHLAND - 19-61 FG (5-19 3-pt); 17-28 FT; 37 rebounds; 18 fouls ... Scoring: Gerald Anderson 4-12 4-5 14, Nick Youmans 4-6 0-3 10, Justin Walker 1-3 5-6 7, Reo Thomas 3-8 4-6 11, Jeremy Sich 2-9 1-2 5, Dennis Tavarus 0-10 0-2 0, Clint Cuffee 3-5 1-2 7, Cordero Roberson 1-2 2-2 4, Dominic Kringlen 1-6 0-0 2 ... 3-point shots: Anderson 2, Youmans 2, Thomas 1 ... Rebound leaders: Dennis 11, Thomas 5 ... Assist leaders: Dennis 4 ... Steal leaders: Cuffee 5 ... Blocked shots: Dennis 2

RIDGEWATER - 32-67 FG (7-23 3-pt); 9-15 FT; 50 rebounds; 25 fouls ... Scoring: Joe Anderson 0-0 0-0 0, Tony Anderson 0-1 0-0 0, Beau Bredeson 1-2 0-0 3, Ben Moser 5-11 1-1 12, Adam Lindblad 4-7 1-1 11, Chad Mulder 1-2 0-0 2, Derek Eisenschenk 3-10 0-0 8, Shawn Neu 1-4 2-2 4, Cory Nietfeld 8-11 0-2 16, Rafael Viana 1-5 1-2 3, Casey Sussenguth 3-7 2-2 8, Anthony Brouilette 0-0 0-0 0, L.W. Frost 1-1 0-0 2, Phil Herkenhoff 1-2 0-1 3, Dan Hennen 0-0 1-2 1, Tom Boike 3-4 1-2 7 ... 3-point shots: Bredeson 1, Moser 1, Lindblad 2, Eisenschenk 2, Herkenhoff 1 ... Rebound leaders: Lindblad 6, Mulder 4, Nietfeld 9, Sussenguth 4, Herkenhoff 5, Bredeson 3, Moser 3, Eisenschenk 3 ... Assist leaders: T. Anderson 3, Lindblad 5, Neu 2, Sussenguth 3, Boike 2 ... Steal leaders: Five with one each ... Blocked shots: Sussenguth 1

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