By Murray Gleffe, Correspondent
ASHWAUBENON-The Jaguar boys’ basketball squad fought back from a double-digit deficit Friday evening (Dec. 22) but it wasn’t enough as they fell to the De Pere Redbirds by a final of 56-49.
Anthony Guarascio led the Jaguars with a double-double (17 points, 11 rebounds), and Griffin Baierl added 9 points and 3 steals.
The Redbirds came flying out of the gates with the inside and out play of Ben Collette and 6’9 Patrick Danen.
With the Redbirds leading 12-4, Guarascio got the Jaguars heart beat going by drilling a three pointer from 23-feet out, and Evan Wood followed that up by taking a hip check from a Redbird defender and knifed in the lane for a bucket.
Later in the half, Baierl got into the action with his active hands on the defensive end. His two steals fueled four quick points for the Jaguars and they trailed 21-17 just before half.
The Redbirds hit a couple of free throws the last minute, and they took a 27-21 lead into intermission.
The Redbirds extended their lead to nine after Austin Allen nailed a triple from the top of the key.
The Jaguars then went on a huge 18-9 run to finally even the game at 39 apiece midway through half number two.
Marcus Wagner and Kenneth Brooks came off the bench and gave the Jaguars a lift in production during that stretch.
“We made a couple of nice runs and had chances to take the lead,” said Chris Karcz, Jaguar Basketball Coach. “We just couldn’t quite get over the hump. We had two empty possessions that hurt us.”
The Redbirds then responded with a quick six of their own.
Jacob Winter hit a left-wing triple, and Collette completed an ‘old fashioned’ three-point play to put the Redbirds up 45-39 with just 4:27 left.
The Redbirds closed the game out by hitting 8 of 10 free throws down the stretch and went onto capture the game by nine points.
“We have been in every game with the exception of one,” added Karcz. “We need to keep working hard and good things will happen.”
The Jaguars fall to 1-7 overall and will be back in action on Jan. 2 when they travel to Wrightstown to take on the Tigers.
De Pere/Ashwaubenon Box Score
De Pere 27,29, -56
Ashwaubenon 21,28, -49
Redbird Totals: FG’s 17-46, 3 PT FG’s 5-10, FT’s 17-25, Rebounds 23, Steals 2, Personal Fouls 16
Collette 15, Laubenstein 11, Allen 9, Danen 8, Winter 5, Patnode 4, Meyer 2, Nash 1, Kinziger 1
Jaguar Totals: FG’s 18-57, 3 PT FG’s 5-20, FT’s 8-13, Rebounds 27, Steals 4, Personal Fouls 21
Guarascio 17, Baierl 9, Wood 7, Cox 4, Adair 4, Brooks 3, Wagner 3, Hansford 2