HILLSBORO — Having a shot to catch league-leading Bangor meant Hillsboro had to avoid any potential pitfalls before Thursday’s Scenic Bluffs Conference showdown with the Cardinals.
Coach Curt Hildreth’s Tigers survived without a scare.
Hillsboro hammered New Lisbon last Tuesday, 61-31, then pulled away from Necedah for a 65–46 victory last Thursday night.
The Tigers improved to 12–3 overall and 8–1 in the Scenic Bluffs, just a game back of Bangor (14–2, 9–0).
Hillsboro will host Bangor Thursday at 7:30 p.m. The Cardinals won the first meeting between the two teams, 62–50, on Dec. 19.
The Tigers have now won eight straight games after a three-game losing streak in last December, which started with the aforementioned loss to Bangor.
In last Tuesday’s blowout of New Lisbon (3–12, 1–7 SBC), junior Max Stockwell scored eight of his game-high 20 points in the opening quarter as the Tigers opened up a 27–8 lead. Stockwell added seven rebounds and five assists.
Skyler Fisher scored all eight of his points in the second quarter as Hillsboro opened 46–14 lead.
Tyler Crandall made three 3-pointers and finished with 11 points and four steals.
“We had a very nice start to the game and were able to control the tempo with our pressure defense,” said Hildreth. “A lot of guys contributed and I thought we shared the ball as well if not better than we have all year.”
Hillsboro assisted on 15 baskets and shot 48 percent (24 of 50) from the field, including 7 of 17 (41.2 percent) from behind the arc. The Tigers also outrebounded the Rockets 32–25 and made 14 steals.
Jarret Smith scored 13 points to lead New Lisbon in the loss.
Hillsboro 65, Necedah 46
In Thursday’s win at Necedah, the Tigers used a 23–8 third-quarter run to inflate a two-point halftime lead.
Hillsboro caught fire in the third quarter making four 3-pointers in the period.
Stockwell scored eight of his game-high 18 points in the third. Tyler Crandall also scored eight of his 16 points in the period and made two of his four 3-pointers on the night.
Stockwell added nine rebounds and four assists.
Crandall has averaged 14.3 points per game over the past three contests, after averaging 4.6 per game over the first 12 games.
Hunter Stanek chipped in 12 points and five rebounds.
“We had a great third quarter the other night led by Max Stockwell and Tyler Crandall,” said Hildreth. “We were very efficient shooting the ball from three and inside the arc. We are looking forward to two big tests this week.”
Hillsboro hosted Westby (6–7) on Tuesday and will now host Bangor tonight at 7:30 p.m. The Tigers will then host North Crawford (4–10) in a non-conference game on Monday.