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Second half defensive effort gives Gehlen boys win over Spalding

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

LE MARS -- The Gehlen Catholic boys basketball team bounced back from a tough loss against Remsen-Union last Friday, beating Spalding Catholic 77-46 on Tuesday.

Both teams got off to a good start offensively and scored 21 points each in the first quarter.

The second stanza remained evenly matched, but the Jays pulled ahead by three to finish the half 39-36.

"We didn't play good defense in the first half. We let their dribble penetration get too deep and then they made some threes in the first half," Gehlen coach Mike Langel said.

The Jays made some defensive adjustments at halftime which proved to be key in their victory.

Langel's team held Spalding to four points in the third period while scoring 21 points on the other end of the floor.

Gehlen kept up their strong defensive effort in the final eight minutes and outscored Gehlen 17-6, resulting in the final score.

"Our defense has to come first, that's just the way it is. We can score a lot of points but we have got to be able to shut some teams down. We did that the second half," Langel said.

The Jays had four players in double figures.

Blake Wiltgen scored a team-high 18 points, followed by Solomon Freking with 17. Alex Kellen had 15 points for his team and Colton Kneip racked up 11.

"Solomon had a great game," Langel said. "He came out with a career high in scoring."

Both Wiltgen and Kneip finished the night with a double-double, grabbing 11 and 10 rebounds, respectively.

The win puts Gehlen at an overall record of 14-3. They will host MMC in a War Eagle Conference matchup on Friday.

"They have given us one of our three losses so that will be a big game," Langel said. "MMC really plays physical. We have got to work hard in practice and be mentally prepared for that."



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