Glenwood boys basketball coach Curt Schulte admits his team’s game against Creston on Friday was an “entertaining” playoff-like game between two pretty evenly-matched Hawkeye 10 Conference teams.
The fact his team lost the game 67-57 not withstanding.
“Unfortunately we just couldn’t get over that hump,” said Schulte, whose team never trailed by more than 11 in the game but couldn’t cut the Panthers’ lead to less than two points over the final three quarters. “We’d get a possession and we’d turn it over or we didn’t execute the way we wanted in certain situations. That was the difference.”
After a fast-paced first eight minutes, the Panthers (13-6 overall, 11-6 in the conference) settled into their tough man-to-man defense and opened the second frame on a 10-0 run to go up 25-15. Glenwood managed to cut that lead to five just before halftime but trailed 34-26 at the break.
The Rams (9-10 overall, 8-8 in the conference) seemed to get on track in the third quarter with a layup and a pair of free throws by Cole Darrow to cut the gap to 41-39 with just under three minutes to go in the frame.
However the Panthers, as they did all night, responded. Thanks to three straight Glenwood turnovers Creston ran its lead back to 48-39 to close out the quarter.
The two teams traded baskets for most of the first five minutes of the quarter until Ram point guard Kyle Wheeler sunk a three-pointer and forward Dylan Blankenship added a layup to cut the lead to 56-51 with 2:49 to go in the game.
Glenwood forced a turnover on the Panthers’ next possession but the Rams’ couldn’t capitalize. Creston’s Luke Eblem snagged a Simms’ miss, went coast-to-coast for a layup.
Schulte was impressed by the Panthers’ strong inside-outside game. Creston edged Glenwood 64-61 in a Jan. 12 match up.
“They’re a nice team. They’re well balanced. They have good quickness, they have good height, they have good strength,” he said.
“They have a nice outside game and a nice inside game so you have to play them sort of even up. They knocked down some big shots when we made runs at them. They countered on us.”
Darrow led the Rams with 25 points and Taylor Kaufman added 10.
Eblen and Tyler Coenen led the Panthers with 18 points each.
A bright spot for the Rams was the return of Blankenship to the starting lineup. The 6-foot-1, 220 pound senior scored 12 points in his first game back after missing nearly five weeks with a stress fracture in his foot.
“It’s good to have him back. He started practicing on Monday and his foot felt good. I thought he looked pretty good even in limited minutes. For his first game back he looked pretty good.”
The loss was the Rams’ fourth in a row and with Atlantic (10-10 overall, 9-8 in the conference) and conference leading Council Bluffs Lewis Central coming to Glenwood this week the schedule won’t get any easier.
“We’ve had a tough schedule in this last four games but I think that’s preparing us. Our kids are tough, they’re resilient and they never quit. They’ll just keep working their tails off,” he said.
C.B. Lewis Central 56,
Council Bluffs Lewis Central outscored Glenwood 29-16 after halftime to pull away for a 56-41 Hawkeye 10 Conference victory last Tuesday.
The Rams (9-9 overall, 8-7 in the conference) struggling to find their shooting touch against the Titans, hitting 30.4 percent from the field (14-of-46) and turned the ball over 13 times to the Titans’ seven turnovers.
Cole Darrow led Glenwood with 10 points.