The Spartans started out a little sluggish and trailed 8-3 early in the contest. Back-to-back three-point baskets from junior Griffin Sage helped close the gap for Orono. Following a Jack Anderson offensive rebound and put back along with two three-point baskets from junior Max Bjorklund, the visitors regained the lead, 16-14.
Orono slowly started to pull away, but the Tigers kept shooting the ball well. The Spartans enjoyed a definite size advantage and were able to control the boards with Jarvis Thomas and Anderson leading the way.
Orono was able to take a 28-22 advantage at the half, with Bjorklund accounting for 18 of the Spartans total points.
In the second half, the Spartans came out aggressively on defense and made it difficult for Hutchinson to get a quality shot. They also began to get into a rhythm offensively with junior Colton Codute dishing out several assists.
Slowly the Spartans were able to build on their lead and with 10 minutes remaining, they enjoyed a 15-point advantage. Coach Wohler was able to get several players involved in the game and all of them made good contributions for the team.
Juniors Caleb Olson and Thomas Lecy each contributed three points while Sophomores Nick Prentice and Blake O’Connor added three and two points respectively.
The Spartans ended the game with a final score of 65–41. The Spartans were led in scoring by Bjorklund with 21 points and Sage with 12. Thomas led the teams in rebounds with nine and Anderson and senior Noel Mshihiri each had six. Codute added nine assists.
“I thought we did a great job of picking up our defensive intensity in the second half. We held a very good shooting team to 19 second half points,” Coach Wohler said.
Next week the Spartans have a busy schedule, while traveling to Waconia on Wednesday and hosting New Prague and Marshall on Friday and Saturday.