POTOSI — Junior Brady Curtis scored a game-high 18 points and grabbed four rebounds to lead first-place Potosi to a 61–38 Six Rivers West victory over visiting Belmont last Thursday night.
Fellow junior Nick Edge drained a 3-pointer to break up an early 4–4 tie, then junior point guard Will Bierman hit back-to-back threes as the Chieftains took off on a 14–2 run that gave coach Mike Uppena’s squad a 19–6 lead with 11:08 left in the first half.
Belmont junior Colin Austin scored back-to-back baskets in a Belmont 9–2 run to pull the Braves within 23–12, but Curtis authored his own personal 10–0 to extend Potosi’s lead to
33–12 with 5:06 left in the half.
Potosi junior guard Jaydon Carbone scored back-to-back baskets in the lane and sophomore Ryan Kruser drained a 3-pointer from the left wing at the buzzer to give the Chieftains a 42–16 at the half.
Uppena’s team kept up the pressure early in the second half, using a 10–5 run out of the locker room to push the lead to 31 points and 53–21.
Belmont kept fighting despite the deficit and strung together their best stretch of the game midway through the half with a 14–2 run.
Sophomore guard Justan Ernst scored four straight points, then junior guard Ethan James hit a pair of free throws and a 3-pointer to make it 56–35 with 7 minutes left, but that’s as close as Belmont got the rest of the way.
Curtis finished with 18 points on 7 of 13 shooting to go along with four rebounds and three assists.
Edge had a near double–double with 10 points and eight boards for the Chieftains, who improved to 11–4 overall and 7–0 in the Six Rivers West with their fourth straight win.
Senior Alex Udelhofen had a nice all around game with nine points, five rebounds and five assists and Bierman finished with six points, four assists and three rebounds.
Austin scored a team-high 12 points for the winless Braves, who fell to 0–13, 0–8.
Ernst and fellow sophomore Brady Wedig each scored eight points in the loss, and James and sophomore Luke Kamps finished with six apiece.
NEXT: Belmont hosted Highland (5–10, 1–7) Tuesday night and will now host Argyle (4–10) Friday night at 7:30 p.m. in a battle of last-place teams in the Six Rivers Challenge. The Braves will also travel to Juda (3–10) on Monday and host Iowa–Grant (3–9) Tuesday night.
Meanwhile, Potosi traveled to Shullsburg Tuesday night and will next host Six Rivers East-leading Pecatonica (11–5) in a Six Rivers Challenge game Friday night at 7:30 p.m. Potosi will then host Galena Monday night.
Last Monday night, Potosi survived a scare from the host Iowa–Grant Panthers in a non-conference game at IGHS.
Potosi missed a free throw with 10 seconds left to give the Panthers one final chance, but senior Jackson Vigen’s potential game-winning 3-pointer at the buzzer went off the back of the rim.
Udelhofen and Edge posted identical double–doubles of 12 points and 10 rebounds to lead the Chieftains to a 52–50 win over the host Panthers (3–9).
Curtis and fellow junior Ethan Groom finished with eight points each for the winners. Kruser added five points and pulled down 10 rebounds.
Vigen scored a team-high 16 points to lead I–G. Sophomore Michael Winders added 15 points, four rebounds and three assists.
Potosi 61, Belmont 38
(from Thursday, Jan. 25 @ Potosi)
Belmont 16 22 — 38
Potosi 42 19 — 61
Belmont (0–13, 0–8) — Justan Ernst 8, Ethan James 6, Colin Austin 12, Luke Kamps 6, Brady Wedig 8. Totals — 12 9-15 38.
Potosi (11–4, 7–0) — Alex Udelhofen 9, Will Bierman 6, Brady Curtis 18, Jadon Carbone 6, Ryan Kruser 5, Austin Schmitz 3, Ethan Groom 4, Nick Edge 10. Totals — 25 4-5 61.
3-point goals — B: 3 (James 1, Wedig 1, Kamps 1), P: 7 (Udelhofen 1, Bierman 2, Curtis 1, Kruser 1, Schmitz 1, Edge 1). Team fouls — B: 9, P: 16. Fouled out — None.
Potosi 52, Iowa–Grant 50
(from Monday, Jan. 22 @ Iowa–Grant)
Potosi 24 28 — 52
Iowa–Grant 17 33 — 50
Potosi (10–4) — Alex Udelhofen 12, Will Bierman 7, Brady Curtis 8, Ryan Kruser 5, Ethan Groom 8, Nick Edge 12. Totals — 16 15-23 52.
Iowa–Grant (3–9) — Jackson Vigen 16, Isaac Hill 11, Kruz Kitelinger 5, Michael Winders 15, Ethan Kuhls 3. Totals — 18 5-11 50.
3-point goals — P: 5 (Bierman 1, Curtis 1, Kruser 1, Edge 2); IG: 9 (Vigen 2, Hill 3, Winders 3, Kitelinger 1). Total fouls — P: 15, IG: 24. Fouled out — P: Udelhofen, IG: Kuhls.