LINGLE – The Lingle-Fort Laramie High School boys’ basketball team knocked off the Southeast Cyclones for the first time since Dec. 17, 2016 on Thursday, Feb. 6.
Despite being held without a field goal over the final six minutes, the Doggers fended off a late push by the Cyclones, knocking off Southeast 46-43.
“I thought our kids played extremely hard,” L-FL coach Steve Zimmerman said. “I thought our press and pressure took them out of their rhythm of their offense.”
Southeast shot only 37 percent from the floor and 17 percent from beyond the 3-point line.
“We just shot poorly again,” Cyclone coach Crockett Herring said. “It’s been our downfall in three of the five games we’ve lost. We can’t shoot that poorly.”
The Dogger lead reached as many as seven by the end of the third quarter.
Trailing 36-29, Southeast made one last comeback attempt in the final minutes of the game.
L-FL junior Hunter Hattan scored the team’s final field goal of the game with 6:02 left on the clock.
Sophomore Cord Herring connected on a 3-pointer, while juniors Hayden Anderson and Bodie Herring trimmed the deficit to 42-41, forcing the Doggers to call a timeout.
“They made a heck of a comeback on us,” Zimmerman said. “I think we helped them with a little poor clock management, but this team in the first half of the season would have given up that lead. Now, they are understanding ways of winning games and it’s not just about scoring.”
In the end, Dogger senior Caeden Riley went 3-of-4 from the free throw line in the final 47 seconds to ultimately secure the win.
“He’s struggled the last two weeks, and he lost some confidence at the line,” Zimmerman said. “Making those two at the end will restore that confidence.”
In the end, Southeast managed to get two 3-point attempts off in the final 11 seconds, but both shots fell short.
“We got a little bit intimidated so we thought about shooting 3s instead of going to the rack,” Herring said. “We can’t do that. We have to go to the basket and make ourselves better by getting open.”
Riley led the Doggers with 11 points, while Hattan added 10. Senior Patrick Swank led the Cyclones with 12 points, while junior Sawyer Anderson added eight.
The next day, both teams were back in action with the Doggers back at home against Niobrara County, while Southeast traveled to Burns.
L-FL came away with a 46-39 win, while Southeast blew out Burns, 63-37.
Riley once again led the Doggers with 13 points and 10 rebounds in the second home win of the weekend, while senior Bailey Powell had 11 points. Junior Cordell Forkner had 10.
The Doggers travel to Rock River on Friday for a 7 p.m. matchup while hosting Hanna-Elk Mountain at 4 p.m. Saturday.
Hayden Anderson led the Cyclones with 17 points, while Cord Herring had 14 in the road victory. Bodie Herring tossed in 10.
Southeast travels to Pine Bluffs on Friday for a 7 p.m. tipoff and hosts Niobrara County at 7 p.m. Saturday.