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Warriors pick up tempo to tame Ponies
BLACK HAWK forward Conner Meyer (#23) drives past Monticello defender Reece Rufer (#52) for two of his game-high 28 points during the Warriors 72-41 Six Rivers East victory over the Ponies on Thursday, Jan. 26.

    SOUTH WAYNE – Black Hawk closed the first half with a 22-7 scoring run to build up a 13-point halftime lead, and then started off the second half on a 14-4 run to pull away from the visiting Monticello Ponies for a 72-41 victory in a Six Rivers East boys’ basketball game at Black Hawk High School on Thursday, Jan. 26.
    “I thought Monticello did a good job of dictating the tempo in the first half. They slowed the game down and limited our possessions,” noted Black Hawk head coach Charlie Anderson. “Towards the end of the half we did a better job of picking up the tempo. In the second half, we kept up that tempo, increased our possessions and extended the lead.”
    After a 3-pointer by Monticello junior Travis McCoy put the Ponies (3-13 overall, 1-7 SRE) ahead 14-12 with 8:25 to go in the first half, sophomore Conner Meyer scored six straight points during an 8-0 outburst that put the Warriors (11-3, 5-2) back into the lead for good at 20-14.
    The Ponies got it back to within a point at 20-19 on a Trenten Ryan’s 3-point play with 4:28 remaining in the half, but the Warriors reeled off 14 of the final 16 points of the half to take a 34-21 lead with them into the locker room at the break.
    Black Hawk came out strong in the second half and outscored their guests 14-4 to increase the lead to 23 points. The Ponies never got closer than 19 the rest of the night as the Warriors defeated Monticello for the seventh meeting in a row.
    Meyer led a balanced Warrior attack with a game-high 28 points and he pulled down five rebounds. Junior guard CJ Leuzinger added 12 points, three assists and two blocked shots, while senior center Josh Meier registered a double-double with 11 points and 13 rebounds along with two blocks.
    “Conner, CJ and Josh did the things they do for us every night. They’re our bread and butter. They started attacking the basket and the points started to come,” said Anderson about his three scoring leaders who combined for 30 of the team’s 38 points in the second half.
    Junior Jett Rufenacht came off the bench to provide 10 points and eight rebounds. Kyle Lovelace matched his season-high with four points and added two blocks. Colby Argall led the team with three steals.
    “Jett off the bench gave us a big spark, especially in the first half. He was really aggressive on the court tonight,” Anderson added.
    Zach Price scored 16 points and Reece Rufer tallied 10 for Monticello.
    Black Hawk will host Potosi (10-5) in the third-place game of the 13th annual Six Rivers Crossover Challenge at BHHS on Friday, Feb. 3. The Warriors also have a non-conference game at home against Lancaster (5-10) on Monday, Feb. 6, and a SRE make-up game at Barneveld (11-2, 6-0) on Tuesday, Feb. 7.
Monticello……………… 21    20 – 41
Black Hawk……………. 34    38 – 72
    Monticello – Price 16, McCoy 3, Ryan 2, Gafner 1, Schaller 4, Errthum 5, Rufer 10. Totals – 17  4-12  41.
    Black Hawk – Colby Argall 1, Jason Treuthardt 4, Kyle Lovelace 4, Jett Rufenacht 10, Josh Meier 11, Conner Meyer 28, C.J. Leuzinger 14. Totals – 28  13-22  72.
    3-point goals– M 3 (Price 2, McCoy 1), BH 3 (Rufenacht 1, Leuzinger 2). Total fouls– M 20, BH 15. Fouled out– none.