UP FOR TWO — Cowboy Ben Moerkerke goes in for a lay up in action against the Shepherd Mustangs at the Manhattan Christian tournament. He scored 21 points in the game, leading Conrad to 66-53 win. Kessler Martin, to the left, takes in the action. Photo courtesy of Kelly Martin
The lull between fall and winter sports finally ended as basketball crazy fans saw their teams hit the courts this past weekend.
Conrad, as in the past, goes down to play in Manhattan Christian tourney and this year the home boys pulled out wins against Townsend and Shepherd.
The 55-45 win had Coach Tyson Anderson smiling as he commented, “Our defensive effort was outstanding throughout the evening.”
He went on to add, “We attacked the basket well and converted early opportunities because of it.”
Conrad built an early 22-12 and never looked back.
Clay Winters tuned in a fifty all around game. He heated up the nets with 20 points, had four steals, five assists and four boards. Also in double figures with 10 and five rebounds was Ben Moerkerke.
Camron Janzen tossed up seven points and grabbed eight boards. Devin VandenBos and Seth Moerkerke each popped for six markers, Sam Larson scored four and Austin Zomer and Kesler Martin each downed a free throw.
The Cowboys scored on 21-48 shots from the floor and were 9-21 at the line. They committed only 10 turnovers in the game.
Playing Shepherd, the Cowboys opened up an early 29-25 lead by the break and forged a commanding 57-37 lead to go down the stretch.
Coach Anderson said, “We made a nice run the second quarter with our transition game to build a lead.”
He noted that turnovers and mental mistakes allowed Shepherd back in the game, but we sealed the win by shooting well from the foul line.”
Conrad committed 20 turnovers in the game after having only 10 the night before.
Ben Moerkerke took control of the game with double-double performance, 21 points and 11 rebounds. He was hot from the line, going 13-14 on the evening.
Three other Cowboys were in double figures for scoring with Winters banging in 12 points off the glass, Zomer was 4-6 shooting from the field and had two treys for 12 points as well. Janzen wrote down 11 markers in the books and grabbed eight boards.
Larson tossed in four points, while Martin, VandenBos and S. Moerkerke all had two points each.
Right before the holiday break, the Cowboys are going to have a big test.
Nemesis Fairfield flies into Conrad on Friday and then on Saturday the Shelby Coyotes slink into the corral for a game followed by Cut Bank Wolves on Tuesday.
After that the team is off until next year. They go down to Choteau on Jan. 6.