The Eagles and Jags duked it out on Thursday night in a boys Great River Conference matchup.
Hinckley-Finlayson scored early and often to get themselves out to an early lead. East Central was able to answer back with a couple of buckets of their own. But the Jaguars relentlessly kept up the pressure, which forced plenty of Eagle turnovers. With all the takeaways it didn't take long for the Jags to jump out to a double digit lead. The Eagles were able to get a couple of threes to fall before the half but they still trailed 44-26.
The second half turned into a scoring frenzy. It felt as if there wasn't a shot that wouldn't go in. Both teams shot well from everywhere on the court. But the Eagles were able to keep the Jaguars off the board for a few minutes, which helped them trim down the lead. What was once a 20+ point lead for Hinckley-Finlayson had diminished down to only 10. East Central was primed for a comeback, but just as they pushed the momentum meter their way it was quite literally stolen away. The Jaguars again ramped up the pressure on defense and created turnovers. This lead to them holding onto their double digit lead. Late in the 2nd half with the Eagles still within 10 of the Jaguar lead they were forced to send the Jags to the charity line. The Jaguars flourished hitting nearly all of their free throws but East Central still had a couple opportunities left. Unfortunately for the Eagles time was not on their side and the Jags dribbled out the rest of the clock for a 90-78 victory.
Hinckley-Finlayson improves to 7-10 on the season and 5-3 in conference play, which ties them at third with Rush City. They will travel to Ogilvie on Tuesday to play the Lions in another conference game.
East Central falls for the first time in 9 games putting their record at 11-6 and 7-1 in the conference. They still sit at the top of the conference with a 2 game lead over 2nd place Pine City. They host section foe Cromwell-Wright tonight.
Cyliss LaFave 30
Levi Degerstrom 28
Jordan Masterson 11
Seth Olson 9
Griffin Stiel 5
Trey Visser 3
Peyton Ammerman and Chase Klar 2
Kyle McDonald 28
Nate Zielinski 18
Warren Carlson 10
Jacob Dixon and Ramsey Keranen 6
Ben Carlin and Brayden Olson 5