Ashby boys' basketball: Arrows fall in battle of LEC powersAshby let a halftime lead disappear against undefeated Battle Lake.
The Ashby boys’ basketball team was 18 minutes away from avenging its only loss of the season last Friday night.
The Arrows led undefeated Battle Lake 34-25 at the break before the Battlers stormed back in the second half. They put up 46 points after halftime on the back of seven threes. That led them to a 71-64 win that carried them to 21-0 overall and 11-0 in the Little Eight Conference.
“I really liked our energy in the first half,” Ashby head coach Jeremy Knick said. “We played good team defense, and we got good looks on offense. The second half was a completely different story. We became impatient on offense and forced a lot of shots instead of being patient and using the clock.”
Battle Lake came out on fire in the second half. Zach Wilkie hit five threes for all 15 of his points. Alex Ukkelberg led the Battlers with 18 points, 12 assists and eight rebounds, while Tyler Ukkelberg added a double-double (14 points, 13 rebounds) and Petric VanErp poured in 12 points and grabbed nine boards.
“We weren’t getting out on shooters, especially Zach Wilkie,” Knick said. “And we were slow getting back on defense. We also got into some foul trouble, and we sent them to the line 28 times and only got to the line six times ourselves. Tanner Langlie had to spend several minutes of both halves on the bench before fouling out, and that is a game changer in my opinion.”
Riley Mickelson led the Arrows with 21 points and 15 rebounds. Blake Ohren had 17 points, while J.P. Moe and Jon Quernemoen finished with 13 and nine, respectively.
It was a tough loss to take for the Arrows, who were trying to give themselves a chance to claim at least a share of the LEC title. Instead, Battle Lake secured the title outright and dropped Ashby to 17-2 and 9-2 in league play.
“They had the energy in the second half,” Knick said. “Sixty-four points should be enough to win the game, but giving them 46 points in the second half alone doesn’t get the job done.”
ASHBY 34 30 – 64
BATTLE LAKE 25 46 – 71
ASHBY – Mickelson – 21 points, 15 rebounds; Ohren – 17 points; Moe – 13 points; Quernemoen – 9 points; Langlie – 2 points, 7 rebounds; Mason Johnson – 2 points
BATTLE LAKE – Tyler Ukkelberg – 14 points, 13 rebounds; Zach Wilkie – 15 points; Alex Ukkelberg – 18 points, 8 rebounds, 12 assists; Petric VanErp – 12 points, 9 rebounds, 3 steals