Trinity Lutheran too much for Lancers

Edinburgh’s hopes of winning its own boys basketball tournament were stopped by highly regarded Trinity Lutheran on Monday night 74-54.

The win snapped the Lancers’ modest two-game win streak while at the same time extending the Cougars’ win streak at two games after suffering their first loss of the season to Scottsburg on Saturday.

Both teams had a common opponent earlier in the day in the form of Manual. In those games, Edinburgh topped the Redskins 66-54 while the Cougars blew out Manual 76-36.

Trinity Lutheran figured to have a harder time with the Lancers, especially since this was their tournament and home court. Edinburgh didn’t disappoint at first, keeping the game close in the first quarter 17-14, and using speed as an advantage against the taller Cougars.

Trinity also didn’t help itself by getting into early foul trouble that forced Cougars coach Aaron Rudzinski to go to his bench early.

Trinity’s two big players, 6-foot-5 junior Daniel Horton and 6-7 senior Toby VanLiew, had to ride the bench early on in the first quarter as they each picked up two fouls each.

However, once the game settled into the Cougars’ favor, the duo resumed thwarting any and all Edinburgh attempts at making a comeback.

Helping the Cougars settle in and increase their lead was the sharp-shooting of senior Jacob Christopher, who hit his first three 3-point shots and had five in the first half.

The second half was a bit different in that Edinburgh had found its range from the 3-point line, but instead of gaining any advantage, they traded baskets with the Cougars.

Edinburgh junior Bobby Simpson hit a pair of 3’s to help the Lancers cut the lead to nine points 51-42 early in the third quarter. That was as close as Edinburgh would get.

With his foul troubles behind him, Horton picked it up by scoring 15 third-quarter points and taking over for Christopher, who only attempted two shots in the entire second half.

After the Lancers scare, Trinity was content to keep trading baskets and picking up fouls to put the lead back up to double-digits. It was then a simple process of holding the Lancers off while the clock ticked down.

Horton led all scorers with 23 points. Christopher had 17 points, while VanLiew added 16.

Senior Matt Heagy led the Lancers with 21 points. Kyle Pendleton added 16 and Simpson ended up with 11 points.

It was Edinburgh’s worst loss of the season and dropped the Lancers to 4-4 on the season.

Edinburgh will now play Indianapolis Lutheran today in the second-place game at 6 p.m. Trinity Lutheran takes on Jac-Cen-Del in the championship game, which is set for 8 p.m.

Author photo
Ken Severson is a sports correspondent for the Daily Journal.