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Hornets swarm Willmar, 84-55

WILLMAR -- On the way to Willmar, the bus carrying the Edina boys basketball team stopped in Darwin to view the world famous Ball of Twine, a block off U.S. Highway 12.

WILLMAR -- On the way to Willmar, the bus carrying the Edina boys basketball team stopped in Darwin to view the world famous Ball of Twine, a block off U.S. Highway 12.

Coach Pat Dorsey made the same stop when he brought the Hornets here in 2006, and won.

"It was the players' choice this year," said Dorsey, a sharp-shooting guard on the Cardinals' back-to-back state teams in the late 1980s. "The other choice was the Spicer Ice Castle. They chose the string."

After crushing the Cardinals 84-55 on Saturday night, it's a good bet the Darwin stop will become routine.

The Hornets led from start to finish in administering a thorough licking before about 600 fans.

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"They were really aggressive, played good defense and we didn't handle their pressure very well," said Willmar center Casey Sussenguth. "They moved the ball around and got the shots they wanted."

The Hornets drilled 9-of-15 three-point shots. Junior guard Ben Biewen made three treys in four tries.

Edina threw several zones and man defenses at Willmar in the first half.

"I think that kept them guessing," said Dorsey. "But it was more about the rebounding. I told our kids at half that we had to be more aggressive. We had a height advantage on them."

Steve Velgersdyk and Bobby Johnson, 6-foot-5 and 6-foot-6, respectively, slowed Willmar inside and on 3s the Cardinals hit on only 3-of-14.

Willmar trailed just 39-32 at halftime, but a 27-7 Edina run started the second half and Willmar never recovered.

"I think we caught Willmar on an off night and us on a good night," said Dorsey, diplomatically.

The lopsided outcome was surprising considering Edina lost to St. Cloud Tech 69-66 at home on Tuesday, while Willmar beat the Tigers 74-61 in St. Cloud on Thursday.

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Edina 84, Willmar 55

Edina (7-4) 39 45 -- 84

Willmar (7-3) 32 23 -- 55

EDINA - 32-62 FG (9-24 3-pt); 11-17 FT; 30 rebounds; 20fouls ... Scoring: Matt lson 2, William DeBerg 12, Jim Hill 5, Danny Schoenecker 12, Ben Biewen 23, Christian Reiersgord 2, Steve Velgersdyk 4, Jeff Moon 3, Zach Matos 14, Taylor Pagitt 2, Bobby Johnson 5 ... 3-point shots: DeBerg 2, Hill 1, Schoenecker 1, Biewen 4, Johnson 1 ... Rebound leaders: Velgersdyk 5, B. Johnson 5 ... Assist leaders: DeBerg 5 ... Steal leaders: DeBerg 4, Schoenecker 4

WILLMAR - 20-44 FG (3-6 3-pt); 12-22;25 rebounds; 13 fouls... Scoring: Adam Lindblad 1, Zach Coquyt 2, Kyle Hilding 2, Casey Sussenguth 19, Mike Dunham 5, Taylor Filipek 13, Ryan DeGree 11, Ryan Filipek 2 ... 3-point shots: Dunham 1, T.Filipek 2 ... Rebound leaders: Sussenguth 4, T.Filipek 3 ... Assist leaders: T.Filipek 5 ... Steal leaders: Dunham 3, Isaiah Streed 3

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