ATKINSON — Laurel-Concord had to travel two hours Tuesday to win its rematch with Cedar County rival Randolph.
The victory puts the Bears, 13-4, in the Conference Tourney title game.
The two teams squared off in December to open the season with a Bear win. The Bears won 48-32 Tuesday, but this time both teams are ranked in the Top 10 in Class C2. Laurel is ranked seventh in the latest Huskerland Prep Report poll. The Cardinals are rated 10th in that poll.
Laurel flexed its defensive muscles early to keep Randolph’s talented tall man, Luke Borst, in check.
The Bears strung together an 11-2 first-quarter run to seize momentum early. L-C followed that up with a 9-5 second quarter to take a 20-7 lead into the locker room.
Randolph finally got some offense going in the third quarter as the Cards outscored L-C 13-10 to cut the deficit to 10 points heading into the final frame. The Bears slammed the door on a Randolph rally by outscoring the Cards 18-12 over the final eight minutes.
Heath Erwin paced the Laurel offense with his 23-point effort. He also pulled down nine rebounds in the contest. Tate Cunningham hit for double figures as well, connecting for 12 points.
Coach Shannon Benson was pleased with the way his team performed against Randolph, holding the Cards to just seven first-half points.
Laurel Concord 11 9 10 18—48
Randolph 2 5 13 12—32
Laurel – Heath Erwin, 23; Tate Cunningham, 12; Ross Kastrup, 7; Ezra Schantz, 5; Johnny Saunders, 1.
Laurel – Heath Erwin, 9; Eli Schantz, 5; Ezra Schantz, 3; Tate Cunningham, 3; Travis Nelson, 2; Bryan Pippitt,1; Lee Larson, 1; Johnny Saunders, 1.
Laurel – Eli Schantz, 5; Ross Kastrup, 3;
Travis Nelson, 1.
The Bears opened the tourney with an easy 79-45 decision over Plainview.
The Bears got their offense going early against the Pirates and never let up as they scored a season-high 79 points.
Four Bears hit for double figures in the contest. Heath Erwin led the team in scoring with 21. Ezra Schantz and Ross Kastrup both had career games, hitting for 19 and 18 points, respectively. Eli Schantz, also hit for double figures with 11. Tate Cunningham led the team on the boards with seven.
Laurel Concord 21 39 52 – 79
Plainview 15 28 37 – 45
Heath Erwin, 21; Ezra Schantz,19; Ross Kastrup, 18; Eli Schantz, 11; Travis Nelson, 3; Kyle Koester, 3; Tate Cunningham, 2; Zach Thompson, 2
Tate Cunningham, 7; Ezra Schantz, 5; Eli Schantz, 3; Heath Erwin, 3; Ross Kastrup, 2; Bryan Pippitt, 1; Travis Nelson, 1; Johnny Saunders, 1.
Eli Schantz, 2; Ross Kastrup, 2; Ezra Schantz, 1; Zach Thompson, 1
Eli Schantz, 5; Heath Erwin, 1; Tate Cunningham, 2; Ross Kastrup, 4; Ezra Schantz, 1
Wakefield handed the Bears a 10-point setback during action last week.
Ezra Schantz and and Heath Erwin led the team in scoring with 15 and 12 points, respectively.
Laurel-Concord 10 13 12 13 – 48
Wakefield 15 9 17 17 – 58
Ezra Schantz, 15; Heath Erwin, 12; Tate Cunningham, 9; Eli Schantz, 6; Ross Kastrup, 4; Justin Hart, 2.
Eli Schantz, 2; Justin Hart, 2; Heath Erwin, 7; Tate Cunningham, 8; Ross Kastrup, 2; Ezra Schantz, 6
Eli Schantz, 3; Heath Erwin, 2; Ezra Schantz, 1
worked hard and finished strong we now get a rematch with Crofton a team that we played early in the season and we are happy to have the chance to play them a again.