Boys basketball roundup: Paynesville stakes a claim for CMC title

Feb. 23—PAYNESVILLE — The Paynesville boys basketball team earned a victory that could help them claim a piece of the Central Minnesota Conference title.

It certainly helped deny Eden Valley-Watkins an outright conference crown.

Paynesville beat the state-ranked Eagles 57-54 on Friday night.

Eden Valley-Watkins is now 12-1 in the conference and ranked fourth in Class AA by the Minnesota Basketball News.

Paynesville also is 12-1 in the CMC. Paynesville closes out the regular season with another conference game at 7 p.m. Monday at Maple Lake. The Irish are winless in conference play. Eden Valley-Watkins, meanwhile, plays host to Holdingford at 7 p.m. Monday. The Eagles beat the Huskers 85-54 on Jan. 25.

In the game, Eden Valley-Watkins was able to cut its deficit to one with 22 seconds remaining, but the Bulldogs made enough of their free throws to stave off a rally, according to Paynesville head coach Rick Hendrickson.

Bryce VanderBeek led the Bulldogs with 20 points. Brayden Pung and Noah Voss each scored 10 points for Paynesville.

Wyatt Moehrle scored 19 points to lead Eden Valley-Watkins. Parker Schultz contributed 10 points for the Eagles, who trailed 23-19 at halftime.

Senior guard Kyler Pickle had 31 points and eight assists in Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City's victory over Royalton at Grove City.

Marcus Forsythe added 16 points, 10 rebounds, three steals and two blocked shots and Jonas Morrison had 16 points and eight rebounds for the Falcons, who got seven assists, four steals and seven points from Jaxon Drange.

ACGC has a 9-5 Central Minnesota Conference record, good for third place in the conference. Royalton is 3-10.

Ethan Albright's 14 points led the Royals.

ACGC closes out the regular season at 7:30 p.m. Monday when it plays Central Minnesota Christian in Prinsburg.

Balanced scoring led Belgrade-Brooten-Elrosa past Maple Lake as the Jaguars had five players reach double figures at Brooten.

Hayden Sobiech paced BBE with a game-high 22 points. Luke Illies and Luke Dingmann each scored 13 points and Dingmann added 10 rebounds and eight assists. Taylor Pieper notched 12 points and Kaden DeRoo contributed with 11 points.

The Jaguars are 8-5 in the Central Minnesota Conference and 16-8 overall. Maple Lake is 0-13 and 2-22.

BBE next plays at 7 p.m. Thursday at Royalton.

The Rockets built up a 37-30 halftime lead to get past New London-Spicer at Rockford.

Ty Kulavik paced Rockford with a double-double, recording 13 points and 11 rebounds.

Rockford's Jacob Elsentrager (13), Grant Kloss (12) and Logan Vicino (10) all finished in double figures.

Grant Paffrath led the way for the Wildcats with 16 points. Chi Schneider had 15 and Gavin Radabaugh scored 13.

NLS is scheduled to play at 7 p.m. Monday at Litchfield.

Nathan Ragner had 20 points, Isaac Ostile scored 12 and Micah Schmidt added 11 points and five rebounds in Watertown-Mayer's victory over Litchfield at Watertown.

Alex Medina had 13 points to lead Litchfield. Creighton Huhner added 12 points and Jacob Dietel scored 10 points for the Dragons, who got nine assists, seven rebounds and eight points from Jack McCann.

The teams were tied 26-26 at halftime.

Gannon Reidinger had 29 points and 12 rebounds and Carson Boike added 20 points in Montevideo's victory over visiting MACCRAY.

Griffin Epema added 12 points for the Thunder Hawks.

Matt Wadsworth had 18 points, Isaac Post scored 16 and Sawyer Janssen chipped in with 15 for the Wolverines.

Montevideo's next game is at 7 p.m. Monday at Morris/Chokio-Alberta. MACCRAY heads to the Section 3A-North playoffs. The second-seeded Wolverines play the winner of No. 7 Renville County West and No. 10 Yellow Medicine East at 2:30 p.m. Saturday, March 2 at Montevideo.

Drew Duininck and Asher Wieberdink combined for 50 points in Central Minnesota Christian School's loss at Sleepy Eye St. Mary's.

Duininck, a junior guard, shot 9 of 18 from the field and went 7-for-8 on free throws en route to scoring 28 points. Wieberdink, a freshman forward, was 8-for-17 on field goals and made all four attempted free throws in his 22-point effort.

CMCS is the third seed in Section 3A-North. The Bluejays play No. 6 Lac qui Parle Valley at 4 p.m. Saturday, March 2 in Montevideo. Before that, CMCS plays Atwater-Cosmos-Grove City at 7:30 p.m. Monday in Prinsburg.

Ryan Schrupp scored a game-high 35 points and drained eight three-point shots in Renville County West's victory at Wabasso.

Schrupp, a junior guard, also recorded six rebounds, five assists, three steals and a block.

Joe Valdovinos, another junior guard, had 19 points with four rebounds, three steals and three assists for RCW. Jack Wertish, a senior forward notched 12 points and grabbed eight rebounds, adding two steals and two assists.

RCW opens the Section 3A-North playoffs with a home game. The seventh-seeded Jaguars play No. 10 Yellow Medicine East at 7 p.m. Thursday in Renville.

Benson defeated Brandon-Evansville to boost its record to 10-16 with the victory at Brandon.

Brandon-Evansville's record dropped to 12-13.

Benson's next game is in the Section 6A playoffs. The pairings have not been announced.

Lac qui Parle Valley picked up a victory at Hancock.

The Eagles are now 10-16. The Owls fall to 11-13.

LQPV's next game is in the Section 3A-North playoffs. The sixth-seeded Eagles play the third-seeded Central Minnesota Christian Bluejays at 4 p.m. Saturday, March 2, at Montevideo.