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Trojan Holiday Classic: West bests East

AARON HAGEN Daily Globe WORTHINGTON -- Michael Sathoff is starting to get back to 100 percent. And that was trouble for the opposition Thursday night. A 6-foot, 9-inch junior center, Sathoff was a force inside for the Mankato West boys basketball...

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Tim Middagh/Daily Globe Mankato West varsity boys basketball player Trey Burmeister (3) squeezes through Sibley East Wolverines Austin Weckwerth (20) and Davon Schultz (50) Thursday night in Worthington.

AARON HAGEN

Daily Globe

WORTHINGTON -- Michael Sathoff is starting to get back to 100 percent.

And that was trouble for the opposition Thursday night.

A 6-foot, 9-inch junior center, Sathoff was a force inside for the Mankato West boys basketball team as the Scarlets defeated Sibley East 69-39 in the first round of the annual Daily Globe-Trojan Holiday Classic.

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Sathoff scored a game-high 20 points for West in just his second start of the season. An illness had limited him earlier in the year.

“I started the season off with pneumonia,” Sathoff said. “It took me a while to bounce back, but now I’m feeling better. It felt great being able to run the court more and getting my strength back.”

Attacking the Wolverines’ zone in and out, West guards Jake Makela and Trey Burmeister combined to score 33 points.

“I just tried to come up through that 2-3 zone in the bottom, catch the ball in the middle of the paint, put it in when I was open and tried to find my teammates when they were too,” said Burmeister, who scored 19 points. “I’d say that’s a strength coming into the year because all three of our guards are returning players from last year. Makela has been playing varsity since he was a freshman, so that gives us a lot of veteran experience out there. He helps set up our offense and gets everyone in a rhythm right away.”

Makela, Burmeister and Sathoff scored the first 18 points of the game for the Scarlets, who opened up a 10-point lead.

“I think we played really well,” Burmeister said. “I think our goal was to come out, defend them in the half court, rebound and push the ball. Right away we set the tone that we were going to do that and we’re going to do it all game long.”

SE’s Devon Schultz (eight points) and Gavin Bates (13 points) combined to go on a 7-0 run to pull the Wolverines within three points.

“The first half, we didn’t get even one easy look at the basket,” SE head coach Daniel Meier said. “We made eight baskets, but they were all tough baskets. They challenged everything really well, they are very well disciplined and very well coached.”

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However, Dawson Frericks scored the next five for West and Burmeister converted a three-point play to spark a 19-2 run to close the half.

Sibley East’s Connor Kranz (12 points) scored eight points early in the second half, but West was able to maintain its lead.

A trey by Burmeister was followed by a pair of baskets by Makela (14 points) and a jumper by Sathoff as West led by 21 with less than five minutes remaining.

“I was just being patient down in the post. If I was getting doubled, I’d kick it out and if I had him one on one, I would take him,” Sathoff said. “I’m mostly down in the post, but I can step out a little bit on the short corner.”

MW finished the game on an 8-0 run to take the victory and improve to 3-3 this season.

“Coming in with a new coach this year, it’s a lot of different offenses,” Burmeister said. “Previously, we had been running the same sets since we were in third grade, since we were nine years old. It’s just a little bit of adjusting. I think now we’re getting into the sixth, seventh, eighth game and it’s starting to click more for us. You can kind of see the offense is turning out a lot better.”

The Scarlets will look for its second win in as many days today against Worthington. Burmeister is hoping their play this week will give West confidence heading into a tough remaining schedule.

“It’s huge coming out here over winter break kind of finding our rhythm,” he said. “Coming back into the Big 9, it’s pretty tough this year, there are a lot of great players in it. It’s definitely huge to come here to Worthington and get a section game (today), it will be good to build some momentum.”

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Sibley East 17 39Mankato West 37 69SIBLEY EAST (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) S. Holmquist 0-2-0-4, Weckwerth 0-1-0-2, Kranz 0-6-0-12, Bates 1-5-0-13, Schultz 0-4-0-8. Totals 1-18-0-39.MANKATO WEST (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) Makela 0-5-4-14, Burmeister 2-6-1-19, Boone 1-0-0-3, Frericks 0-4-1-9, Johnson 0-1-2-4, Sathoff 0-9-2-20. Totals 3-25-10-69.

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Tim Middagh/Daily Globe Sibley East Wolverine Scott Holmquist (1) scores two points Thursday against Mankato West.

Related Topics: BOYS BASKETBALL
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Trailing at halftime, the Worthington High School girls basketball team outscored Albert Lea 49-27 in the second half Thursday night in Worthington
The Minnesota West men's basketball team was defeated by conference opponent Rochester Wednesday night. Bie Ruei had a big night with 26 points and four assists.