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Pioneers knock off first-place Falcons
Johnson, Sigel lead the way in win over River Falls
Senior Boston Johnson averaged 15 points, 8.5 rebounds and 5.5 assists in a pair of WIAC wins last week as the Pioneers improved to 33 in conference play.

     PLATTEVILLE — The UW–Platteville men’s basketball team defeated first place UW–River Falls 72–61 on Saturday at Williams Fieldhouse.

     Senior Boston Johnson was the high scorer for the Pioneers, logging 19 points, nine rebounds and six assists in the win. Sophomore Trey Sigel wasn’t far behind Johnson, scoring 18 points and recording two rebounds and a block.

     The Pioneers improved to 9–8 overall and 3–3 in the Wisconsin Intercollegiate Athletic Conference.

     The Pioneers only let the Falcons take the lead once throughout the entire 40 minutes of play, taking control of the game with 12:46 remaining in the first half. The entire first half was all UW–Platteville with the Pioneers leading 37–26 at the half.

     When it came time for the second half, the Falcons didn’t give up easily, but closed the gap to no more than nine points throughout the final minutes of play.

     While each team scored an even 35 points in the second half, it was the Pioneers’ big first half that boosted them to the 72–61 victory over UW–River Falls.

     As a team, the Pioneers shot 43.4 percent from the field, including a 94.7 free throw percentage, missing only one of 15. The Pioneers also doubled the Falcons’ number of points in the paint, and took advantage of the UW–River Falls turnovers, scoring 10 points from Falcon turnovers.

    The Pioneers return to action tonight at UW–Whitewater (12–5, 3–3 WIAC).

Delete - Merge UpPioneers hold off Eau Claire

     Four players scored in double figures as the Pioneers dominated nearly every facet of the game on the way to an 84–75 WIAC win over visiting UW–Eau Claire Wednesday night on Bo Ryan Court.

     Vaassen had the hot hand early on, scoring 13 of his game-high 21 points in the first half, as the Pioneers 43–32 halftime lead. Vaassen made 8 of 10 field goal attempts in the victory, including 4 of 5 from downtown, and had three rebounds and three assists.

     Junior forward Jared Schneidermann scored the first basket of the game to give the visiting Blugolds a 2–0 advantage a minute in, but the lead, their first and only of the game, would be short lived.

     Sophomore guard Matt Oestreich answered with a three-pointer, one of five triples for the Pioneers in the first half, and buried a jump shot 30 seconds later and UWP never trailed again.

     The Blugolds got as close as six points on two separate occasions in the final minutes, once on a Kalien layup with 3:14 to play, and lastly on a three-point play by Andrew Duxbury that made it 73–67 with 2:18 left.

     But the Pioneers made 11 of 14 from the free throw line, including 4 of 6 from junior Johnson (Oshkosh/North) and 4 of 4 from Oestreich, in the final 1:33 to preserve the victory.

     Oestreich finished with 20 points, on 7 of 11 shooting, five rebounds and two steals. Johnson added 11 points, a team-high eight rebounds and five assists. Duax chipped in 14 points and five boards in 20 minutes off the bench.

     Sophomore point guard George Diekelman had 13 points, seven assists and four rebounds in the loss for Eau Claire.

UW–Platteville 84, UW–Eau Claire 75
(from Wednesday, Jan. 20 @ Platteville)
UW–Eau Claire          32    43     —  75
UW–Platteville           43    41     —  84
UW–Eau Claire (9–7, 2–3) — Jacob Kohner 3, Jared Schneidermann 12, George Diekelman 13, Tyson Kailen 19, Jack Martinek 8, Deondre Lucas 7, Chris Duff 6, Andrew Duxbury 7. Totals — 28-59 11-17 75.
UW–Platteville (8–8, 2–3) — Trey Sigel 4, Matt Oestrich 20, Boston Johnson 11, Cory Vaassen 21, Blake Derickson 2, Robert Duax 14, Colin Connelly 3, Ethan Woodrow 5, Dan Lowe 2, Nick Cokenour 2. Totals — 29-54 16-21 84.
3-point goals — EC: 8 (Schneidermann 1, Diekelman 1, Kalien 4, Lucas 1, Duff 1); P: 10 (Vaassen 4, Oestreich 2, Duax 2, Connelly 1, Woodrow 1). Team fouls — EC: 19, P: 17. Fouled out — none.

UW–Platteville 72, UW–River Falls 61
(from Saturday, Jan. 23 @ Platteville)
UW–River Falls          26    35     —  61
UW–Platteville           37    35     —  72
UW–River Falls (11–6, 5–1) — Jack Herum 2, Jon Christensen 12, Garret Pearson 19, Grant Erickson 4, CJ Lewis 9, Devin Buckley 6, Austin Heidecker 4, Connor Goodwin 4. Totals — 24-55 6-13 61.
UW–Platteville (9–8, 3–3) — Trey Sigel 18, Matt Oestrich 9, Boston Johnson 19, Cory Vaassen 16, Robert Duax 6, Colin Connelly 2, Ethan Woodrow 2. Totals — 23-53 18-19 72.
3-point goals — RF: 7 (Christensen 2, Pearson 2, Lewis 1, Buckley 2); P: 8 (Vaassen 1, Sigel 4, Oestreich 1, Johnson 1). Team fouls — RF: 18, P: 15. Fouled out — none.