February 04, 2014 | 03:17 PMTension was high in the gym. It was an electric Friday night. The Badgers were down 28-18 to Westosha Central at halftime but rallied in the third quarter and erased the deficit.
Badger owned the game's momentum in the second half and the Westosha Falcons wrestled them for the lead.
Cheers and shouts bounced off the walls. Badger defeated Westosha 60-58 on Friday night in overtime.
"I thought we settled for quick 3's in the second period and did not rebound or defend at the same level we started the game at," Badger head coach Darin Lottig said of the early deficit. "Our emphasis at half time was to attack the middle of their zone as much as possible. From there we were able to get to the foul line and it also loosened up their perimeter defense."
Down 52-49 with 6.7 seconds left in the fourth quarter, Badger's Lincoln Wieseman had the ball at the top of the key. Jake Kozlowski was wide open in the corner behind the arc. Wieseman passed him the ball. Kozlowski sank the shot. Tie game.
"Koz's shot was awesome, as was the assist from Lincoln Wieseman," Lottig said. "Our guys are doing a nice job of finding each other in better positions to contribute."
Westosha inbounded from the Badger baseline.
The Falcon's point-guard lost control of the ball at half court — he dribbled out of bounds off his own foot and Badger regained possession.
Lincoln Wieseman took the ball from the top of the key and drove to the basket. Seconds ticked away and Wieseman went in for a layup. A basket would win it. There was contact and three bodies hit the floor. Charge called against Wieseman.
Westosha inbounded with 0.6 seconds on the clock and a player attempted a one-armed full-court shot as time expired. The ball hit the backboard and bounced off the rim. The Badger fans exhaled.
The lead changed hands three times, but with 1:23 left in the 4 minute-long overtime period, Derrick Buntrock drained a 3-pointer to give Badger a 1-point lead. Kozlowski was then fouled and made one of two free throws to make the score 60-58.
Badger turned it over after a travel was called on Jake Berhorst. Berhorst fell backward with his feet planted and passed the ball off before he hit the ground.
"What, did he travel with his butt?" a Badger fan shouted.
Westosha drove down court and Badger made a stop. Seconds ticked away. Westosha called a timeout with 4.7 seconds left in overtime.
The Westosha point-guard nearly lost control of the ball while moving upcourt and lobbed a shot from half-court as time expired.
The ball bounced off the top of the backboard. Badger won.
Wieseman led the Badgers with 14 points. Tony Ashley scored 12 and Derrick Buntrock scored 11.
"I thought our kids were very patient against their zone in the second half," Lottig said. "They really did a great job of getting into scoring positions. I thought it was pretty cool that we had different kids making big plays down the stretch."
Logan Tenney, Badger's 6'7'' post, scored 6 points against Westosha and 11 points the next day against Baraboo.
Last week, Lottig said he wanted Tenney to have a larger role on the offense.
In Badger's past three games, Tenney has scored 11, 6 and 11 points — a significant increase in offensive production from his 3.3 points per game in the games before Jan. 25.
"Logan is a true team guy," Lottig said. "He does whatever his team needs of him. It doesn't matter if it's diving on the floor for a loose ball, kicking the ball out to an open shooter, or coming up with a big rebound … whatever it is, I know I can count on Logey to do whatever he can to make it happen. He's becoming a great player. He's an awesome teammate and an even better person."
On Saturday the Badgers won again against the Baraboo High School Thunderbirds 66-53 in Baraboo. It's the Badgers' third win in a row, and third game in a row in which they scored 60 or more points, due in part to Tenney's scoring surge.
Lottig said the Baraboo gym was a fun environment to play in.
"We started pretty strong against the T-Birds," Lottig said. "I thought our execution on offense was decent again — especially against their zone — and kids made plays for each other, once again."
Kozlowski scored 16 points against the Thunderbirds and Berhorst scored 14.
Badger is now 8-7 (3-5 Southern Lakes). The Badgers will play Burlington High School (8-8) 7 p.m. on Friday in Burlington and Sussex Hamilton (8-6) 7:30 p.m. on Monday, Feb. 10 in Sussex.
Please check next week's issue for coverage of Tuesday night's game against Delavan-Darien.