HOT START LIFTS STRATFORD BOYS BASKETBALL PAST COLBY IN WIAA DIVISION 3 REGIONAL SEMIFINAL


Stratford junior Camden Daul drives inside during the second half of the Tigers’ win over Colby on Friday in a WIAA Division 3 boys basketball regional semifinal at Stratford High School. (Photo by Paul Lecker/For Zaleski Sports)

By Paul Lecker

For Zaleski Sports


STRATFORD – Stratford came out hot, opened up a double-digit lead in the first five minutes, and never looked back in defeating Colby 71-53 in a WIAA Division 3 boys basketball regional semifinal Friday night at Stratford High School.


Camden Daul made a pair of 3-pointers, and Cade Bruesewitz and Max Vanderhoof each drilled one as well as the Tigers opened up an 18-4 lead a little less than five minutes into the game and were never threatened.


Stratford made eight 3-pointers in all in the first half and shot a sizzling 65 percent (17-for-30) to open up a 44-27 lead by halftime.


Neither team made much of a run in the second half as Stratford’s lead fluctuated between 15 and 22 points.


After Colby closed to withing 49-34 after a basket by Caden Healy, Daul made a basket and Bruesewitz hit another 3-pointer to push the lead back to 20 with 9:50 to go.


Despite Colby making 11 3-pointers, including four from Tucker Meyer who had a team-high 20 points, Stratford was able to maintain its double-digit lead.


Daul finished with 20 points, Cody Miller had 14 and Bruesewitz added 13 points for the Tigers, who finished 10-for-19 from 3-point range.


“We’ve been clicking on offense and I hope it continues,” Stratford coach Curt Schmidt said. “We handled their pressure. They threw every defense at us they could and I thought we handled it well. I thought we attacked out of it instead of being content with breaking it. I thought we put together a nice game. Colby played a really good game tonight and for us to come out on top, we’re thankful.”


Stratford (14-8) moves on to a Division 3 regional final at Neillsville (15-5) on Saturday at 7 p.m.


“We’re excited to still be playing,” Schmidt said. “I’m excited for this group of guys. They’re passionate about playing right now, you could see it here tonight. It will be a tough matchup, but it will be fun.”


Tigers 71, Hornets 53

Colby 27 26 - 53

Stratford 44 27 - 71

COLBY (53): Mason Schmutzler 1-2 2-4 5, Tucker Meyer 7-13 2-3 20, Richard Streveler 3-8 2-2 10, Brandon Voelker 0-2 0-0 0, Brody Decker 0-0 0-0 0, Jaden Underwood 3-10 0-0 9, Henry Schmitt 0-0 0-0 0, Mateo Lopez 0-0 0-0 0, Caden Healy 2-4 0-0 4, Kaden Wiese 1-5 2-2 5. FG: 17-44. FT: 8-11. 3-pointers: 11-26 (Meyer 4-7, Underwood 3-7, Steveler 2-5, Schmutzler 1-2, Wiese 1-4, Voelker 0-1). Rebounds: 19 (Voelker 5). Turnovers: 15. Fouls: 9. Fouled out: none. Record: 10-13.

STRATFORD (71): Braeden Schueller 0-0 0-0 0, Riley Bauman 1-1 0-0 2, Cody Miller 5-10 2-2 14, Kale Weisenberger 0-3 0-0 0, Cade Bruesewitz 5-6 0-0 13, Max Vanderhoof 2-7 1-2 6, Jacob Skroch 3-4 1-2 8, Camden Daul 8-14 1-1 20, Keegan Weiler 3-5 0-0 6, Kaden Griesmer 0-0 0-0 0, Zack Seitz 1-3 0-0 2, Devin Ulrich 0-3 0-0 0. FG: 28-58. FT: 5-7. 3-pointers: 10-19 (Bruesewitz 3-3, Daul 3-6, Miller 2-6, Skroch 1-1, Vanderhoof 1-3). Rebounds: 33 (Skroch 6). Turnovers: 11. Fouls: 15. Record: 14-8.

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