Bulldogs use fast start to race past West Central
By LARRY LEEDS, Sports Editor
A quick start and a balanced scoring attack propelled the Madison Bulldogs past the West Central Trojans 75-45 in a Big 8 Conference game on Thursday night at Hartford.|
With the win, the Bulldogs will at least share the Big 8 Conference title, and with a win over Vermillion next Thursday, the Bulldogs would win the Big 8 crown outright.
"This was a nice win for us coming off the loss to Sioux Falls Christian," said Madison Coach Mike Ricke. "We talked about how we needed to put the loss behind us and get ready for the next game, and I thought the guys did a good job of that."
Madison grabbed a 20-11 lead after the opening period and stretched its lead to 45-23 at intermission.
"This was Tyler Wiebe's first game back after missing the last four to a hip injury," Ricke said. "He did a nice job in limited minutes. It didn't take long for him to re-establish himself on both ends of the floor. We are a better team when he is playing."
Madison made 26 of 61 field goals, 43 percent, and hit 16 of 22 free throws, 73 percent. West Central made 16 of 44 field goals, 36 percent, and hit 7-of-14 free throws, 50 percent.
The Bulldogs held a huge advantage on the boards 41-18.
Braxton Olson had 13 points and six rebounds to pace the Bulldogs. Trae VandeBerg added 11 points and Jacob Giles chipped in with nine counters.
Jesse Brown snared a game-high nine rebounds for Madison.
Drew Maras scored 13 points for West Central. Cole Jorgenson and Brayden Swartwoot each had four rebounds.
"We face two tough opponents, Sioux Valley on Friday (tonight) and Canton on Saturday," Ricke said. "Both teams pose different challenges that we need to be prepared for, and we will need to be at the top of our game to be successful against them."
Madison goes to Volga to face Sioux Valley with tipoff set for 8 p.m. The Bulldogs will host Canton on Saturday with tipoff set for 5 p.m.