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Silverstreak boys drop overtime heartbreaker to Roncalli

The Osakis boys' basketball team lost a 62-59 heartbreaker to Roncalli in overtime last Saturday to fall to 4-3 on the season. Clinging to a two-point lead, the Silverstreaks watched Roncalli's Spencer Christenson calmly drain two free throws wit...

The Osakis boys' basketball team lost a 62-59 heartbreaker to Roncalli in overtime last Saturday to fall to 4-3 on the season.

Clinging to a two-point lead, the Silverstreaks watched Roncalli's Spencer Christenson calmly drain two free throws with five seconds left in regulation to tie the game.

Then with 27 seconds left in the extra frame, Christenson again made a game-changing play. This time it was on a steal and a bucket that gave his team a one-point lead. It was only fitting that Christenson would be the player to drain two more free throws with just fewer than 10 seconds remaining to push the lead to three.

It was a great finish to what was an exciting game. Both teams battled back and forth all game, exchanging leads eight times in the final 13 minutes.

"You don't want to lose, but if there is a good loss, this would be one," Osakis head coach Chris Stroup said. "I felt that for the strange circumstances - playing quarters again, traveling four hours, sitting around a hotel, only a dozen fans - that our players got back to playing basketball and lost by three in overtime to a very good Roncalli team that took the ball from us 26 times."

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Leif Nomeland helped them overcome those 26 turnovers by dominating in the paint with 27 points, 21 rebounds, six blocks and five assists.

"Leif Nomeland had the performance we have been waiting for," Stroup said. "He's been battling a bad ankle, but the rest seems to have gotten that taken care of."

His counterpart from Roncalli, though, responded with an impressive game himself. Logan Wherry put up 23 points and grabbed 10 rebounds himself to help his team overcome the huge game by Nomeland.

Matt Laven was also in double figures for Osakis, and Adam Saulsbury made his season debut after being out the first month with an injury. He scored six points for the Silverstreaks in his return.

A rejuvenated Nomeland and continued production from players like Laven could be bad news for the rest of the Prairie Conference as the Silverstreaks get set to head into the bulk of their conference schedule.

Their game tonight against Upsala will be only their second conference game of the season. They fell to Browerville in the first Prairie match-up, but the four-time defending champions should not be overlooked as conference frontrunners after getting off to a bit of a slow start.

"We seem to be back on track," Stroup said. "It will be good to get back into the season after Christmas break and build some momentum."

GAME STATISTICS

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OSAKIS 59

RONCALLI 62

OSAKIS INDIVIDUAL LEADERS - Leif Nomeland - 27 points, 21 rebounds, 6 blocks, 5 assists; Adam Saulsbury - 6 points, 2 rebounds, 2 assists; Matt Laven - 14 points, 5 rebounds, 1 block, 3 assists, 1 steal; Dominic Baker - 4 points, 2 rebounds, 1 assist; Adam Sadlemyer - 8 points, 3 assists, 3 rebounds; Devin Waldvogel - 1 rebound

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