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RAHS BBB in the thick of the conference race
With some good balance in the Suburban East Conference this season, Roseville Area High School boys basketball coach Ted Critchley didn’t expect anyone to run away with the league title. As the midway point of the conference schedule approaches this week, Critchley’s forecast has been on the money.
None of the SEC’s 10 teams managed to make it through the first half of the schedule unscathed. Roseville was the last squad to lose a conference game when it fell 86-73 to Cretin-Derham Hall on Friday.
Roseville’s loss leaves three teams in a virtual tie for first place in the Suburban East standings. Cretin, at 8-1, holds a half-game lead over Roseville and East Ridge, which are both 7-1. Mounds View and Woodbury are still in the hunt at 6-3 but trail the top three by two games in the loss column. The five teams in the bottom half of the standings all sport sub-.500 conference records.
Roseville had Cretin on the ropes in the first half when it led by as many as seven. That lead dropped to one at halftime but moved back to eight early in the second. Foul trouble and one hot Cretin hand then changed the momentum in a hurry.
In a 2 1/2-minute stretch, Roseville’s front line of Derek Magnuson, Jake Geyen and Jesper Horsted all picked up their fourth fouls and Cretin took advantage.
The biggest advantage exploiter was Cretin sharpshooter Sam Neumann, who rolled up 45 points to lead all scorers. Only one other Cretin player managed to reach double figures.
Roseville got 22 from Kyler Briggity, 11 from Geyen and 10 from Lance Gardner but it wasn’t enough.
Three days earlier, Roseville picked up probably its biggest win so far when it dumped Woodbury 83-80. The Royals are the only Suburban East team to have beaten Cretin so far this season.
The Roseville big men avoided foul trouble against Woodbury and came up with huge games. Magnuson led the Raiders with 23 points and was followed by Horstad, who added 19. Geyen scored 16 and Gardner finished with 13.
Woodbury’s Ben Rizzardi led all scorers with 28.
With the pressure of being the only unbeaten team in the conference gone, Roseville can turn its attention to its opponents this week. First up is a visit from Mounds View on Tuesday. The Mustangs gave Roseville all it could handle in the first meeting before Horstad hit a short jumper at the buzzer to win it.
Roseville heads out on the road on Friday for a trip to White Bear Lake. Although the Bears are a second-division team in the Suburban East, they took Roseville to overtime back in mid-December.
Brian Meyers can be reached at email@example.com.
Suburban East Conference boys basketball standings (Through Jan. 19)
|White Bear Lake||3-5||6-9||4 1/2|