By Paul Lecker For Zaleski Sports
MARSHFIELD – The Marshfield boys basketball team usually relies on its outside shooting to outscore its opponents, but with Stevens Point taking the 3-point line away, the Tigers were forced to find a different way.
Marshfield shot a sizzling 67 percent in the second half as it was able to drive to the basket and finish, and held off a late rally to beat its Wisconsin Valley Conference rival SPASH 64-60 in a WIAA Division 1 boys basketball regional semifinal Friday night at Marshfield High School.
Seventh-seeded Marshfield (15-8) moves on to a D-1 regional final at No. 2 seed Neenah (21-2) on Saturday at 7 p.m. The game will be broadcast on WDLB-AM 1450 and wdlbwosq.com, and live-streamed at zaleskisports.com/live-sports. Stevens Point finishes the season at 13-10, with three of those losses coming at the hands of the Tigers.
“We had to (take the ball to the basket),” Marshfield coach Scott Scheuer said. “Teams have been taking us off the 3-point line. There’s not a basketball player alive that wants to give it up (pass it) right away, so what’s my second option? I’m going around you. I can’t do that, know I’ll pass. I knew it was going to come down to one possession. We did just enough, just enough.”
Marshfield led 13-8 after a quick 6-0 run that saw Sam Hinson, Anthony Posteluk and Joey Goettl score inside.
Stevens Point responded by scoring on six-straight possessions to take the lead. Three-pointers from James Jacobs and Austin Beyer put the Panthers on top 18-15 and they led the rest of the first half.
SPASH pushed the lead to 29-21 on hoops by Evan Vollendorf and Jacobs, before Posteluk scored inside and from 3-point range to cut the Tigers’ deficit to 32-26 at halftime.
“They shot the ball really well (13-for-19 in the first half) and we were fortunate to only be down six (at halftime),” Scheuer said. “
Point led by eight on two occasions early in the second half before the Tigers started to find their groove.
Marshfield scored on eight-straight trips to finally forge back ahead. Goettl had five points, Sam Roherty had a big offensive rebound and a hoop, Posteluk drilled a 3, and Kyle Tremelling had a steal and layup that gave the Tigers a 48-47 lead with 7:27 to go.
The diversity of the offense during Marshfield’s second-half push was a key to the win.
“We’ve been through so much this year and we just knew, coming out in the second half, that we had to just had to keep pushing through and that we’d overcome up sooner or later. We weren’t going to stop and weren’t going to say no,” Goettl said. “Defense is where it’s at.”
Marshfield never relinquished the lead, but the Panthers didn’t go away quietly.
Nate Streveler made consecutive 3-pointers to bring Point within two at 57-55 with 3:50 left.
After Addison Hill scored for Marshfield, Jacobs converted a three-point play, cutting it down to one at 59-58 with 2:16 remaining.
Marshfield missed the front end of consecutive one-and-one free throw attempts but SPASH was unable to score. After the mishaps at the line, the Tigers were able to make five of their final six attempts at the line, including the final four in the last 8½ seconds, to keep the Panthers at bay.
Jacobs and Vollendorf each scored 16 points, and Streveler added 15 for Stevens Point. Posteluk led four Tigers in double figures with 18 points. Goettl added 14, and Hinson and Tremelling each scored 12 in the win.
Neenah defeated Marshfield 79-66 in the season opener back on Nov. 26, and Scheuer said he knows the Tigers will have to play their best to pull off an upset and return to sectionals after missing out last year.
“Kyle (Tremelling) played under six minutes, and Joe (Goettl) played 13 minutes and got in foul trouble right away, and they beat us by 13,” Scheuer said. “They’ve gotten better, I like to think we’ve gotten better too. If we can just weather their runs.”
Tigers 64, Panthers 60 Stevens Point 32 28 – 60 Marshfield 26 38 – 64 STEVENS POINT (60): Brenden Klish 0-0 0-0 0, James Jacobs 6-7 3-3 16, Austin Beyer 4-5 0-0 9, Gavin Hyer 1-2 0-0 2, Evan Vollendorf 5-11 3-4 16, Bryce Pelky 1-3 0-0 2, Nate Streveler 6-12 0-0 15. FG: 23-40. FT: 6-7. 3-pointers: 8-16 (Streveler 3-6, Vollendorf 3-6, Beyer 1-2, Jacobs 1-2). Rebounds: 19 (Jacobs 4, Vollendorf 4, Pelky 4). Turnovers: 12. Fouls: 16. Fouled out: Beyer. Record: 13-10. MARSHFIELD (64): Addison Hill 3-5 0-0 6, Sam Hinson 4-6 3-4 12, Bennett Koehn 0-2 0-0 0, Anthony Posteluk 7-10 2-4 18, Joey Goettl 6-11 0-0 14, Sam Roherty 1-1 0-0 2, Kyle Tremelling 6-8 0-2 12. FG: 27-43. FT: 5-10. 3-pointers: 5-13 (Goettl 2-4, Posteluk 2-4, Hinson 1-3, Koehn 0-2). Rebounds: 17 (Posteluk 6). Turnovers: 8. Fouls: 11. Fouled out: none. Record: 15-8.
Paul Lecker is publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com, a contributor to Zaleski Sports.