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Basketball: Lakers comeback to eliminate Tigers in OT

Jake Schultz / Forum News Service1 / 4
Jake Schultz / Forum News Service2 / 4
Jake Schultz / Forum News Service3 / 4
Jake Schultz / Forum News Service4 / 4

The No. 4-seeded Morris Area / Chokio-Alberta Tigers saw its season come to an end in a 58-51 overtime loss to No. 1-seeded Minnewaska in the Section 3AA-North semifinal game on Thursday, March 8, in Willmar.

No. 1 Minnewaska and No. 2 New London-Spicer will meet in the Section 3AA-North championship at 8 p.m. Saturday, March 10 at Southwest Minnesota State in Marshall. The Tigers finish the season 13-14 overall.

The Tigers led nearly from start-to-finish, holding a 12-11 lead in the opening seven minutes and only surrendering the lead once for fewer than 10 seconds prior to the game's final minute.

MACA took advantage of the Lakers’ shot selection early on, jumping out to a 25-22 halftime lead, thanks in part to Camden Arndt's 10 points. He scored 10 of the team's first 17 points, settling for 14 by the end of the game. Jackson Loge took over in the second half, scoring 10 of his team-high 18 points in the latter period.

The Lakers overcame early foul trouble as they hit the bonus with 9:49 to play in the second half. From that point forward, however, the Tigers only managed 14 points.

It was the Laker defense that helped decide the game late. Minnewaska outscored the Tigers 21-7 over the last 5:15 and the overtime period. Morris/C-A was held scoreless in overtime and the Lakers added seven points to earn the victory.

Along with Loge and Arndt, Jaret Johnson also finished in double digits with 12 points. Loge had a double-double and paired 16 rebounds with his 18 points.

The Tigers graduate six seniors: Starters Tate Nelson and Connor Koebernick along with reserves Chandler Vogel, Kyle Staebler, Tyler Reimers, and Judah Malek.

MACA returns top scorers from this season in Johnson and Arndt, who averaged 16.0 and 11.4 points per game this year, respectively. Arndt is closing in on 1,000 career points, finishing this season with 307 for a career total 833. If Johnson repeats his productivity of this season, both Arndt and Johnson could both reach 1,000 career points in their senior seasons. The Tigers also bring back Loge, who finished with 264 points, 185 rebounds and 70 blocks this season. He averaged 9.8 points, 6.9 rebounds,  and nearly 2 blocks per game.

Minnewaska 58, Morris/C-A 51

Morris/C-A (13-14)...............25 26 0 — 51

Minnewaska (19-7)................22 29 7 — 58

MORRIS AREA/CHOKIO-ALBERTA - Scoring: Camden Arndt 14, Connor Koebernick 4, Tate Nelson 3, Jackson Loge 18, Jaret Johnson 12 ... 3-point shots: Arndt 2, Nelson 1, Johnson 1 ... Rebound leader: Loge 16, Johnson 5 ... Assist leader: Koebernick 6 ... Steal leader: Arndt 2, Nelson 2

MINNEWASKA - Scoring: Jackson Johnsrud 7, Grant Jensen 5, Jaeger Jergenson 6, Matt Gruber 9, Garrett Jensen 27, Shawn Carsten 4 ... 3-point shots: Johnsrud 1, Gruber 1, Garrett Jensen 2 ... Rebound leader: Garrett Jensen 9, Johnsrud 8, 5 Jensen 7 ... Assist leader: Gruber 5 ... Steal leader: Johnsrud 2

Brooke Kern

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