Rushford-Peterson executed its game plan. Methodically, they ran their sets to get shots for their top shooters and playmakers. The Trojans (8-seed, 15-12) tested #1 Goodhue (1-seed, 24-3), putting them in an early 32-25 second half hole. But Goodhue controlled the glass and 6’7” G/F Sam Opsahl could not be stopped. Seeding held true as the Wildcats moved on to the 1A semis. The first half was back and forth before Goodhue built a small advantage, 25-19. R-P then ended the stanza scoring the final seven points to take a 26-25 lead into intermission. Out of the break, Dawson Bunke, the Trojans top shooter, nailed a pair of threes and the Trojans had their 32-25 lead. Bunke hit a couple more from distance, but R-P could not hit enough shots to keep pace with the favored Wildcats. A key point came when Tristan King hit a three to put Goodhue up 40-38. The Wildcats then never trailed. Opsahl made sure of it. The senior four-year starter scored 19 second half points. He hit 7 of 7 free throws in the stanza while also helping the Wildcats dominate the defensive glass. R-P had four offensive rebounds, but the Wildcats had 21 defensive boards. R-P went one-and-done 18 times including 12 times after intermission. They could not scrap many extra possessions due to the Wildcats size. Down the stretch, Goodhue made enough free throws (8 of 14) to offset the Trojans hitting just 3 of their final 13 shots. The Wildcats prevailed 60-50. Bunke (24 pts, 7-17 threes, 5 rebs, 2 blks) and Grady Hengel (14 pts, 6-11 FGs, 10 asts) led the way for Chris Drinkall’s group. All other Trojans accounted for just 12 points. Goodhue was led by Opsahl (28 pts, 10-11 FTs, 4-9 threes, 10 rebs, 6 asts) and Adam Poncelet (16 pts, 7-9 FGs, 6 rebs, 4 asts, 3 stls). Luke Roschen chipped in 8 points. Goodhue held a 13 of 20 (65%) to 3 of 5 (60%) edge at the free throw line. The teams combined for 18 threes, R-P going 11 of 29 (38%), Goodhue 7 of 22 (32%). Goodhue won the glass 34 to 17. The Trojans season finishes at 15-13. Hengel, a four-year player, is a key departure along with senior starters Riley Tesch and Owen Fenske plus Miles Anderson.
About Paul Trende