MCC continues hot start to season with 58-42 victory over Lancers

Photo by Jake Przytarski MCC’s Blake Schmitz goes up for a shot during their game against Canby on Monday. The Rebels defeated the Lancers 58-42.

SLAYTON – Fresh off a two-game tournament sweep in Sleepy Eye this past weekend, the Murray County Central boys basketball team resumed its impressive start to its regular season schedule with a 58-42 victory over the Canby Lancers at home on Monday.

The Rebels began Monday night’s contest with an early lift from Mason Woldt, who was able to draw a foul and make the first basket of the game but couldn’t complete the three-point play to give MCC a 2-0 lead. From there, the Rebels went on a 6-0 run to push the lead to 8-0 before the Lancers were forced to call timeout to regroup.

Showing a bit of rust without a prior game under their belts, Canby struggled to score in the opening 11 minutes of play with their only baskets coming from Nolan Harding and Will Varcoe to make it 8-4 before the Rebels went on a 9-0 run to make it 17-4.

In need of a spark, the Lancers would receive it in the form of a 3-pointer by Ethan Thovson that breathed new life in the Canby offense, but didn’t slow down the Rebels as they cruised into the half carrying a 31-19 lead with Nate Everson and Jack Pierson already in double figures with 11 and 10 points, respectively.

Out of the half, the offensive production for the Lancers improved greatly with Riley Kockelman leading the charge beginning with an early basket to cut the lead to 33-21 after Pierson opened the scoring for the Rebels.

Continuing to hit big shots, Canby was able to trim the deficit to seven points after Thovson hit another big 3-point shot to make it 35-28. Unfortunately for the Lancers, the Rebels had an answer on their next two offensive possessions with a pair of 3s from Pierson and Everson to push the lead back to double digits at 41-28.

Everson, who would finish the night with a game-high 22 points, set the tone for the remainder of the game and kept a surging Lancers team at bay with nine of the team’s 17 points to close out the contest and push the Rebels to a 58-42 win.

Leading the way for MCC in the home victory was Pierson with a 19-point showing, good enough for second in scoring between the two teams behind Everson’s 22 points. Mason Woldt added nine points and finished with seven rebounds which was good enough for second on the team behind Pierson and Everson who each chipped in eight rebounds. Blake Schmitz and Justin Benda each led the way in assists with five apiece.

The Lancers were led by Kockelman who finished with 13 points followed by Thovson with nine. Matt Groen and Carter Wente tied for a team-leading five rebounds and Tyler Sayre led the way in assists with three to go along with four rebounds and three points.

MCC will return to action on Friday when they hit the road to take on the Fulda Raiders at 6 p.m. in hopes of moving to 4-0 through four games.

The Lancers, sitting at 0-1 on the season, will travel to Granite Falls to take on the Yellow Medicine East Sting on Friday at 7:15 before returning home on Dec. 11 to take on the Russell-Tyler-Ruthton Knights.