Home » Sports » Kinziger, Hornseth lead De Pere to victory

Kinziger, Hornseth lead De Pere to victory

By Greg Bates

DE PERE – When John Kinziger and Will Hornseth have their inside-out game clicking, the De Pere boys’ basketball team is tough to stop.

The two Division I recruits combined for 47 points as De Pere held off a late charge by Sheboygan North to pull off an 81-66 victory in Fox River Classic Conference (FRCC) action Friday night.

Kinziger, a junior point guard, put in 24 points, and Hornseth, a sophomore post, scored a career-high 23 points.

The two were 18-for-23 shooting from the field.

“It’s a great feeling,” Hornseth said about his career night. “I’ve been playing hard the whole time, and it felt good to get the ball in the post and do my work.”

De Pere coach Brian Winchester said there was an emphasis all week in practice leading up to the game to get the ball in the post.

“It’s got to be a productive rhythm between our guard play and our post play,” Winchester said. “You can’t score it down, because you don’t get forever to enter the post, because everyone goes there. It was an emphasis to get (Hornseth) the ball, and it will continue to be an emphasis to get him the ball in the post. It was good tonight. When he gets a little space to work, he’s effective down there.”

The win was an important one for De Pere.

Its last game was the team’s lone loss of the season, falling 58-56 to Ashwaubenon Jan. 14.

The loss dropped De Pere to No. 2 in the latest Division 1 WisSports.net Coaches Poll.

Having one week off between games made the loss even harder, Winchester said.

“Ultimately, it would have been nice to play last Saturday after a loss, but the schedule didn’t dictate that,” he said. “We had exams, so it was an irregular week — we only practiced Monday, Wednesday, Thursday after that game. The kids and coaches knew we had to have a good, solid bounce-back game.”

Hornseth said he was looking to put the loss behind him.

“That loss stung, but we wanted to come out and show we are and should be the best team in the state,” he said. “We need to make a statement, and we did.”

De Pere made a statement with its effective shooting.

Unofficially, the Redbirds shot 31-for-42 (73.8%) from the field for the game.

De Pere (12-1 overall, 8-1 FRCC) hit its first 10 shots.

It led 25-15 after a Kinziger 3-pointer.

A scrappy Sheboygan North (8-5, 5-4) squad cut its deficit to six, 27-21, despite the Redbirds’ hot shooting.

Hornseth beat the first-half buzzer with a tip-in to give De Pere a 39-30 advantage.

The Redbirds took their biggest lead of the game, 50-35, after Cal Matzke hit a tough basket, but the Raiders didn’t back down.

They responded with an 18-6 run, and it was a three-point game, 56-53, with 7:38 remaining on the clock.

De Pere answered in a big way, as Kinziger drained a 3-pointer, Hornseth scored three baskets in the paint and Jack Jorgensen nailed a 3 during a 14-4 run to make it 70-57.

“(That was a) big momentum time,” Hornseth said regarding his team’s run. “We started flowing on offense more and getting our feet back under us. It was still from the loss last week, but then the second half we started getting going.”

Winchester said he saw his team crank it up to another gear during the game-altering run.

“(I saw) a lot of toughness out of us,” he said. “We were up almost 15 at one point, and they chipped away down to three. It was both ends of the floor for us that we had to re-establish ourselves on, and we were able to do that.”

Along with the big games from Kinziger and Hornseth, Jorgensen scored 13 points.

Sheboygan North was led by Luke Schmidt with 20 points and Max Tutas with 19.

The win keeps De Pere on pace with Ashwaubenon — both sitting at 8-1 — at the top of the FRCC standings.

De Pere will have a nonconference home game against Escanaba, Mich., which is Winchester’s alma mater, Jan. 22.

After that, the Redbirds have a pair of conference road games at Pulaski and Manitowoc Lutheran next week.

A big showdown at Pewaukee, ranked No. 2 in Division 2, will take place Jan. 29.

Facebook Comments
Scroll to Top