MFL MarMac's winning streak snapped

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Carver Blietz-Bentien contributed four points and a team-high seven rebounds in the Bulldogs’ 48-44 loss to Clayton Ridge on Jan. 5. (Photos by Audrey Posten)

Max Havlicek puts up a contested shot in last week’s match-up with the Eagles.

Cayden Ball assesses the Clayton Ridge defense in last week’s loss. He had a team-high 17 points in the game.

Wyatt Powell attempts a three-pointer.

By Audrey Posten, Times-Register

The MFL MarMac boys basketball team entered play last week on a three-game winning streak, but failed to keep the momentum alive in losses to Clayton Ridge and North Fayette Valley.

The 48-44 loss to Clayton Ridge on Jan. 5 was especially tough. The Bulldogs raced ahead 17-4 in the first quarter and maintained a 25-13 lead into halftime. But the Eagles came roaring back in the third period, using a 20-6 run to edge ahead 33-31. They continued to hold the Bulldogs off in the fourth, winning by four points.

MFL MarMac shot just below Clayton Ridge in the game, making 45.9 percent of field goals compared to 47.4 percent by the Eagles. The Bulldogs were also better from behind the arc, knocking down five of 17 attempts while Clayton Ridge hit just three of 11, and even out-rebounded their opponent, 20-17. 

MFL MarMac had trouble controlling the ball, however, committing 15 turnovers to Clayton Ridge’s 10. The Eagles snagged 12 steals while the Bulldogs came away with only four.

Cayden Ball was MFL MarMac’s leading scorer, with 17 points, and also had three rebounds, an assist and a steal. Wyatt Powell was close behind with 13 points, and contributed a team-high four assists along with a rebound. Gavin Meana chipped in six points, while Carver Blietz-Bentien’s stat line included four points, a team-leading seven rebounds and an assist.

The game wasn’t as close Jan. 8, as the TigerHawks cruised to a 64-44 win over the visiting Bulldogs. NFV led throughout, with an 18-10 score after the first quarter and 34-19 advantage at the break. MFL MarMac couldn’t muster a comeback in the second half.

The Bulldogs shot 40.9 percent in the game and struggled to sink threes, making just five of their 22 attempts. The TigerHawks also controlled the boards all night, pulling down 36 rebounds compared to MFL MarMac’s 18.

With 10 points, Meana was the team’s top scorer. Powell added nine, along with two rebounds, two assists and a steal. Ball finished the night with seven points, three rebounds and two assists, while Max Havlicek contributed seven points, four rebounds and a steal off the bench.

The losses dropped MFL MarMac’s overall record to 3-5 and Upper Iowa Conference standing to 3-4. The Bulldogs will play twice this week, beginning with a make-up game at Postville on Jan. 11, followed by a home match-up with Turkey Valley on Jan. 12.

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