Willmar still stalking the CLC leaders
WILLMAR -- Though it's only the first week of the new year, this was a must win for the Willmar Cardinals. At 3-2 the Cardinals were already behind four of the nine other teams in the Central Lakes standings. That included the incoming Little Fal...
WILLMAR -- Though it's only the first week of the new year, this was a must win for the Willmar Cardinals.
At 3-2 the Cardinals were already behind four of the nine other teams in the Central Lakes standings. That included the incoming Little Falls Flyers at 4-1.
Willmar responded with an all-out effort to bring down the Flyers 61-50 Friday before about 500 fans at the Willmar gymnasium.
Willmar was led by Kyle Townswick, who poured in 26 points, five over his average. The junior guard potted five 3-pointers plus 8 of 9 free throws down the stretch.
"That was probably the first time we've put two halves together," said senior post Matt Roisum, who contributed five points, six rebounds and a pair of assists. "We put a lot of pressure on them defensively and we passed the ball around so Kyle got his shots. If he would have been on, we would have won by more."
Townswick, who has 36 treys in nine games, was 5 of 14 from the arc.
Behind him was the usual balanced scoring: Matt Seehusen with eight, Cory Hanson with seven, Michael Dunham with six, Roisum's five and Ryan Hagemeyer with four.
"I was pleased with the defensive effort," said Willmar coach Steve Grove. "We did a good job on (Phil) Hochsprung in the post. Held him to nine points."
The Flyers, also a Section 8AAA foe, rallied from a 10 point halftime deficit to pull in front 34-33 on back-to-back treys by Will Kornbaum.
Townswick answer with a trey of his own and Hanson snatched the ball away at midcourt and drove for a basket and a 38-34 lead. The Flyers went up 40-38 but Dunham sank a pair of free throws to tie it 40-all at 9:09. Townwick hit again, this time from the corner, and Willmar never trailed again.
Defensive pressure by Luke Buer, Ross Van Hauen, Roisum and Hanson gave the Flyers fits. Three straight possessions stalled with turnovers and Willmar pulled away at the free throw line and on a trey by Roisum.
The talented Flyers have a two-point victory over St. Cloud Apollo. Their other loss was to unbeaten Rocori, which Willmar has yet to play.
Both Willmar teams leave today at 7:45 a.m. for Moorhead and a girl-boy doubleheader against the Class AAAA Spuds.
The Cardinals' win last night was their eight straight against the Flyers.
Willmar 61, Little Falls 50
Little Falls (4-2, 5-4) 19 31 -- 50
Willmar (4-2, 6-3) 29 32 -- 61
LITTLE FALLS - 18-35 FG (6-13 3 pt); 8-17 FT; 31 rebounds; 24 fouls ... Scoring: Tom Dunlap 7, John Dunlap 3, Will Kornbaum 13, Eric Bell 4, Dustin Parker 2, Phil Hochsprung 9, John Primus 12 ... 3-point shots: Kornbaum 3, T. Dunlap 2, J. Dunlap ... Rebound leader: not available
WILLMAR - 17-49 FG (7-25 3 pt); 20-31 FT; 25 rebounds; 19 fouls ... Scoring: Kyle Townwick 26, Matt Seehusen 8, Tyler Horning 2, Cory Hanson 7, Michael Dunham 6, Matt Roisum 5, Casey Sussenguth 1, Ryan Hagemeyer 4, Luke Buer 2 ... 3-point shots: Townswick 5, Dunham, Roisum ... Rebound leader: Seehusen 4, Towswick, 3, Roisum 6, Ross Van Hauen 4 ... Assist leader: Roisum 2... Steal leader: Seehusen 4, Hanson 4
NEXT -- Willmar: Today at Moorhead, 2:30 p.m.