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Boys basketball: Trojans offense comes alive in win over Fulda

WORTHINGTON -- It didn't really matter Thursday night that the Worthington Trojans gave up nine 3-point shots and had just two of their own against visiting Fulda. No, that doesn't matter when they can score so well around the basket. Worthington...

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Worthington Trojans boys basketball player Nathan Boneschans (21) gets the rebound and leaps up to score Thursday night against Fulda. (Tim Middagh/The Globe)

 

WORTHINGTON -- It didn’t really matter Thursday night that the Worthington Trojans gave up nine 3-point shots and had just two of their own against visiting Fulda.

No, that doesn’t matter when they can score so well around the basket.

Worthington hit 53 percent of its field goals in a 92-64 boys basketball win over the Raiders. The passing was sharp and the shots fell all around.

Offense had been a struggle for the Trojans for much of the early 2017-18 campaign, but it all worked like clockwork against the Raiders. Though Fulda hit more from long range, Worthington was content to hit 40 from 2-point range compared to Fulda’s 11. The result was a victory that seemed never in doubt.

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“The ball movement was good. We’re all getting used to playing together as a team, moving the ball and getting everybody a chance to score,” said 6-7 senior Stewart Merrigan, who finished with 15 points.

“We’ve been working on moving the ball outside the flow of the offense, just working the ball around. That’s our strength usually, finishing down low. We’re a defensive-heavy team, but now we’re working on the offense more,” said 6-3 senior Tyler Linder, who led all scorers with 24 points.

Throughout the game, Worthington did a good job of getting the ball to their two big men, Linder and Merrigan, who finished their shots consistently. The guard play -- which had been a little bit inconsistent in previous games -- looked sharp. Terbuto Ochothow, the Trojans’ a 5-11 freshman point guard, had 10 assists to go along with 13 points and 13 rebounds.

Linder scored seven of Worthington’s first nine points to start the game as the home team worked out to an 11-5 lead. It became 15-7 on a Nathan Boneschans drive. Fulda’s Dalton Slinger meshed a 3-point shot at the buzzer, but WHS was still able to hold onto a 47-33 lead at halftime.

Needing to start the second half well, the Raiders allowed Worthington to score six of the first eight points in the second half. They never made a serious run after that.

Meanwhile, Worthington continued to play hard. The biggest cheers were reserved for little-used reserve Pwe Ku, who swished the Trojans’ second 3-pointer of the game late in the second half for the team’s 90th point.

“I was really happy with the way we shared the ball tonight. We had 25 assists as a team,” said Trojans head coach Clint Meyer. “That’s what we talked about before the game, getting off to a good start and not letting up. To play hard for 36 minutes.

“Fulda didn’t really have an answer for our bigs down low,” he said.

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Slinger led Fulda with 14 points, with 12 of them coming on 3-point shots. Leighton Gehl had 11 points. Zach Thier and Matthias Kunerth both had 10.

The win moved Worthington to 4-4 on the season. Fulda fell to 4-3.

Fulda 33 64Worthington 47 92FULDA (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) -- Marquardt 0-3-0-6, Slinger 0-4-2-14, Thier 2-1-2-10, Gehl 1-3-2-11, Spittle 0-0-2-2, Renneke 2-0-2-8, Cheadle 0-1-1-3, Kunerth 0-3-4-10. Totals 9-11-15-64.WORTHINGTON (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) -- Ochothow 1-5-0-13, Othow 0-2-1-5, Boneschans 0-4-0-8, Huisman 0-3-1-7, Calmus 0-3-0-6, Linder 0-11-2-24, Merrigan 0-7-1-15, Ku 1-0-0-3, Koepsell 0-1-0-2, K.Ojulu 0-4-1-9. Totals 2-40-5-92.

3892999+Trojans Boys Basketball Vs Fulda Web.jpg
Fulda Raiders senior Matthias Kunerth (12) leaps to the basket in Thursday night's boys basketball game against Worthington. (Tim Middagh/The Globe)

Related Topics: BOYS BASKETBALL
Doug Wolter joined the Worthington Globe in December of 1983 as a sports reporter. He later became sports editor, and then news editor and managing editor. In 2006 he moved to Mankato with his wife, Sandy, and served as an editor at the Mankato Free Press. In 2013 he and Sandy returned to Worthington to take up the job of sports editor at The Globe, and they have been in Worthington since.

Doug can be reached at dwolter@dglobe.com.
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