Coach calls game 'scrap battle'

Soroco boys basketball can't finish comeback


— West Grand coach Leo Pesch joked that a win in Saturday's game against Soroco would go to "whoever gets over their hangover first."

Both teams returned home late Friday evening after long trips that led them to big losses - West Grand to Grand Valley and Soroco to Meeker.

In what Pesch called a "scrap battle," West Grand found the cure first. West Grand jumped on Soroco passing lanes early for easy steals and capitalized on a string of Soroco traveling calls to go up 27-13 at halftime.

"(Pesch) mixed up the half-court and full-court presses, taking away the middle," Soroco coach Sam McLeod said. "We couldn't get in a rhythm."

The Rams did cut down on the "mental mistakes" in the third quarter and began working their way back into the game.

A big three-pointer from Johnny DeCosta followed by a three-point play converted by Steven Meade cut the West Grand lead to eight heading into the final quarter.

Bryan Spaeth's transition breakaway and a pair of Cody Miles' foul shots put Soroco within reach at 38-34 with four minutes to go, but West Grand pulled away with superb foul shooting - 11 for 16 in the fourth quarter. The Mustangs' Tyler Music scored 10 of his 18 points in the fourth, going 6-for-8 from the line.

Ryan Tibbetts nailed a 3-pointer to put Soroco within reach, down 43-39, with two minutes to go, but the Mustangs stood strong at the foul line and Soroco could not convert its final chances down the stretch. The game ended, 49-41.

"Soroco did a great job coming back and they never quit," Pesch said.

Meade led the way for the Rams with 14 points and nine rebounds. Spaeth chipped in 11 points and Miles added five rebounds.

"We missed a couple key layups trying to play catch-up and they didn't miss from the line," McLeod said. "But our guys got back in it with a chance to win."

Soroco takes on Vail Christian at 7 p.m., Tuesday night in Oak Creek.


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