Rough times for boys basketball team

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MTT News's picture
Bill Cooney/For the Times-Tribune
Logan Raffel (left) and Middleton’s boys basketball team hope to get back on track this week./Times-Tribune photo by Mary Langenfeld

As a three-point ace himself, Middleton sophomore Logan Raffel can certainly appreciate quality outside shooting when he sees it.

Unfortunately, Raffel and the Cardinals saw too much of it from Madison Memorial Friday night.

The Spartans hit 5-of-9 three-pointers in the second half — including a trio from junior Kyle Yu in a 2-minute span early in the period — en route to defeating host Middleton, 63-42, in a Big Eight Conference game.

“They’ve got a lot of shooters,” Raffel said. “We could have got (out on them) quicker, but it just didn’t work out. When they have that many threats they just pass for more and it’s another three. It’s hard to get out to those shooters.”

Senior forward Cole Deptula scored 12 of his team-high 14 points in the first half and Raffel chipped in 12 points for the Cardinals (5-9 overall, 4-7 Big Eight), who pulled within five points at 26-21 with 16 minutes left after a pair of baskets by senior forward Billy Johnson.

But Memorial then authored an impressive 15-2 run to go up 41-23 with 10:33 remaining, using outside shooting while turning up the defensive pressure.

During that stretch Yu, who had a game-high 17 points, buried three triples for Memorial (10-5, 6-5).

“It’s deflating because we knew coming into the game that he’s their three-point shooter,” Deptula said. “He hits a high percentage of them from out there when he’s open.”

And open he was. The Spartans, who struggled against Middleton’s zone in the first half, found ways to rotate the ball quickly and find the soft spots outside.

But it’s not like Middleton is the only team to allow a ton of threes to the Spartans, who hit 15 triples in an 88-47 victory over Middleton on Dec. 20. On Friday, Memorial was 9-for-24 from beyond the arc.

Memorial coach Steve Collins, who has led the Spartans to three state titles in his tenure, said this year’s squad is the best three-point shooting team he’s fielded. The Spartans are shooting over 40 percent from beyond the arc this season.

“When that (3-point shooting) starts, that’s scary. For an opponent, I’m guessing it’s scary,” Collins said. “I’ll say it. It is my best 3-point shooting team. Statistically it is.”

In the first half, Middleton hung tough despite shooting 6-for-26 from the field. The Cardinals finished the game 15-of-50 (30.0%) and 8-of-25 (32.0%) from beyond the arc.

Deptula had 12 first-half points but just two in the second, as the Spartans crowded him on outside shots.

“I think I just wasn’t getting the ball in spots where I was open,” Deptula said. “Shots weren’t open for me, so I was moving it more than shooting it in the second half.”

After beating Verona on Jan. 30, the Cardinals have now dropped two in a row and have lost six of their last seven games.

“It’s some of the same issues that we have,” Collins said of Middleton. “There are guys that played last year but didn’t really play. This is not the same team we played a month ago. They’re more aggressive. They’re rebounding better. All that stuff. In this league, experience is king.”

All is not lost for Middleton with the postseason approaching. It’s a new season where anything can happen.

“Obviously at this point we’re not going to get the No. 1 seed or anything,” Raffel said. “But as a team, we just have to mesh together. Anybody has a chance to get to state in this. We just need to come together as a team.”

• Madison La Follette 80, Middleton 56 — Cardinals senior center Parker Van Buren had 18 points and senior guard Cole Deptula added 13. But it wasn’t nearly enough as Middleton fell to the visiting Lancers last Saturday.

La Follette, the No. 1 ranked team in Division 1, improved to 16-0 overall and 13-0 in the Big Eight. Middleton fell to 5-10, 4-8.


Feb. 7

Madison Memorial ……….. 24 39 — 63

Middleton ……………………. 17 25 — 42

Madison Memorial — Cannon 1, Mitchell 6, Collins 3, Traore 15, Younk 6, Jackson 1, DeYoung 2, Kerkhoff 12, Yu 17. Totals 21 12-18 63.

Middleton — Raffel 12, Deptula 14, Van Buren 8, Fosdick 4, Johnson 4. Totals 15 5-7 42.

3-point goals — MM 9 (Yu 5, Kerkhoff 3, Collins 1); Mid 7 (Raffel 4, Deptula 3). Total fouls — MM 14, Mid 16. Fouled out — Kerkhoff.


Feb. 8


Madison La Follette …………. 33 47 — 80

Middleton ………………………… 24 32 — 56

LA FOLLETTE (fg ft-fta pts) — De. Gray 3 1-2 7, Da. Gray 2 2-4 6, Stewart 5 0-1 13, Probst 8 1-2 21, Gibbs 1 0-0 2, Cloud 1 0-1 2, Prather 4 3-4 11, Riak 5 0-0 10, LaShore 2 0-0 5, Roth 1 0-0 3. Totals 32 7-14 80.

MIDDLETON — Raffel 3 0-0 8, Deptula 5 0-0 13, Patterson 0 0-2 0, Schultz 2 0-0 5, Finch 1 0-0 3, Van Buren 8 2-4 18, Fosdick 1 2-2 4, Carlson 0 1-2 1, Johnson 1 0-0 2, Ballweg 0 2-2 2. Totals 21 7-12 56.

3-point goals: ML 9 (Probst 4, Stewart 3, LaShore 1, Roth 1); Mid 7 (Deptula 3, Raffel 2, Schultz 1, Finch 1). Total fouls: ML 16; Mid 13. Fouled out: Prather.




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