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home : sports : sports Tuesday, May 31, 2016

1/19/2013 Email this articlePrint this article 
Cal-Wheat senior Austin Houzenga goes up for a shot inside after grabbing an offensive rebound during the fourth quarter of the Warriors’ 62-51 victory over Bellevue, Tuesday night. Houzenga scored 13 points in the game. Photos by Ross Eberhart
Warrior senior Nolan Christensen takes flight after getting fouled in the first quarter of Cal-Wheat’s 11-point victory over Bellevue, Tuesday night. Christensen scored nine points during the game with seven of them coming on free throws.
Warriors crash the boards in win over Bellevue

By Ross Eberhart
Sports editor

Second chances do not happen all that often.

So you can bet the Calamus-Wheatland boys basketball team made the most of theirs, Tuesday night.

Taking on Bellevue for the second time this season, the Warriors grabbed 18 offensive rebounds, and, more importantly, used them to score 14 second-chance points.

Those extra points proved to be big as Cal-Wheat was able to avenge an earlier loss to the Comets with a 62-51 victory.

The Warriors not only made the most of their second chances, but they also made sure that Bellevue did not have a chance to do the same as Cal-Wheat added 26 defensive rebounds to its offensive haul for 44 boards total.

It marked the fourth-straight game in which Cal-Wheat has grabbed 35-or-more rebounds, and the Warriors are now ranked 24th in all of class 1A with 459 rebounds.

The game got off to a quick start with Bellevue scoring on its first possession and the Warriors answering back with six-straight points.

John Diercks got Cal-Wheat on the board with a bang - a three-pointer - while center Jake Janssen added a free throw and then started the Warriors' big night on the boards by grabbing a miss and putting it back in for two.

Unfortunately, the Warriors' lead was gone almost as quickly as it was built as Bellevue knocked down a three-pointer and then converted a lay-up to go back in front 8-7.

The lead swung back to Cal-Wheat as Nolan Christensen banked in a jumper, but switched again after Bellevue made two-consecutive baskets.

The Warriors cut into the deficit as Austin Houzenga scored after an offensive rebound, but Bellevue finished off the quarter's scoring with a three-pointer and it was 14-10 Comets as the first quarter came to a close.

Any momentum that Bellevue might have picked up in the first quarter, though, did not carry over to the second, as it was the Warriors who came busting out of the gate in the period.

Janssen started an 11-0 Cal-Wheat run with a hoop inside, while Houzenga added a baseline jumper to tie things at 14-14.

Janssen broke the tie with another hoop and Houzenga followed him again, this time with two free throws.

Diercks, then, finished off the Warriors' surge by going coast-to-coast for a lay-up and then adding an additional free throw when he was fouled on the drive.

Again, the lead did not hold up and as soon as Cal-Wheat finished its 11-0 run, Bellevue countered with a 7-0 push that knotted things up at 21-21.

The tie (and Bellevue's run) was broken by senior Seth Patterson, who drained a three-pointer, and Austin Bumann added a bucket of his own to put Cal-Wheat up five.

The Comets came back with a free throw, but Janssen scored after an offensive rebound and Christensen added two free throws to make it an eight-point game.

Bellevue scored last in the half, but it was still the Warriors who held a 30-24 lead at the break.

The game looked in danger of getting out of hand early in the second half as Cal-Wheat opened the third quarter with Janssen converting a three-point play and scoring on a put-back, and Christensen making one-of-two free throws.

Instead of putting the game away, though, the Warriors became victims of some sloppy play, which allowed Bellevue to answer with a 9-1 run to make it a game again.

The Warriors broke out of their funk with yet another put-back as Houzenga grabbed a teammate's miss and dropped it in. Patterson added a short jumper and the lead was back to eight.

The Comets, however, still made things interesting as they ended the third quarter with a three-pointer to make it 41-36 heading to the fourth.

Another quick Warrior start (Houzenga hit a free throw, while Janssen and Justin Alden added buckets) gave Cal-Wheat some room to start the fourth, but Bellevue came back once more and got the lead back down to five.

The teams traded points and the Comets stuck right with the Warriors, still trailing by six with less than four minutes remaining.

The Warriors, though, crashed the boards one final time to put the game away.

Alden got things started with a bucket inside to make it 55-47 and Cal-Wheat scored four more points, thanks to offensive put-backs by Bumann and Janssen, to push the lead back to double-digits.

The lead never dropped below 11 the rest of the way as Houzenga scored on a lay-up and Diercks answered a Comet free throw with one of his own.

Janssen led the way for the Warriors with 18 points, while Houzenga joined him in double figures with 13.

Christensen added nine points with seven of them coming on free throws. Diercks, meanwhile, had seven points with Alden adding six, Patterson five and Bumann four.

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