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Pirates pick up road victory over Redbirds

By Murray Gleffe

DE PERE — After not playing for nearly three weeks, the Bay Port boys’ basketball team fought back from a double-digit, first-half deficit to defeat De Pere 57-50 Jan. 7.

“We stuck the course,” said Bay Port head coach Nate Rykal. “We were helping too much off of shooters and not contesting enough. We dug our way back, and De Pere started to miss some shots. We went punch-for-punch with a great team and made the plays at the end.”

Logan Geissler led the Pirates in the Fox River Classic Conference road win with 18 points, while Gunnar DeCleene chipped in 12 points and five rebounds.

De Pere was paced by Will Dehn’s 14 points on 60-percent shooting from behind the arc.

The Redbirds took an early 10-4 lead after Jake Kinziger made a layup.

De Pere extended its lead to 20-9 with 6:43 left until halftime when brother John made an off-balance runner from the baseline.

Up until that point, Bay Port had connected on only four field goals and had turned the ball over seven times with De Pere’s full-court pressure.

After Brock Freeman connected on an elbow jumper, it carried over with the Pirates scoring 14 of the last 19 points of the half to trim the Redbirds’ lead to 25-23 at the break.

The second half saw seven lead changes with a back-and-forth affair.

Nate Forystek powered in a layup for Bay Port to give the road team a 32-27 lead, but De Pere answered back with a Dehn left-handed flick off the glass to put De Pere back in front 41-39 with 6:31 remaining.

Down the stretch with the game deadlocked at 49, Geissler drained two free throws to put the Pirates up a pair.

John Kinziger made 1-of-2 two free throws to cut Bay Port’s lead to 51-50 with 39 seconds remaining, but the Pirates came through down the stretch.

Geissler canned two free throws a few seconds later, and after a Redbirds’ miss from deep, DeCleene was the recipient of a long baseball throw and subsequent three-point play to put Bay Port up six points with seconds remaining.

“We’ve run the play multiple times,” said DeCleene. “As I was running to the hoop – I’m not going to lie – I was a little nervous. I saw it coming and knew I had to finish to give us a two-possession lead. We wanted this win, and we got it as a team.”

Box score 

Bay Port: 23, 34—57

De Pere: 25, 25—50

Pirates: Geissler 18, DeCleene 12, Forystek 9, Plumb 5, Thomas 5, DeBouche 4, Weber 2, Freeman 2

Redbirds: Dehn 14, John Kinziger 11, Hohol 7, Jake Kinziger 6, Basten 6, Jorgensen 5, Donaldson 1

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