FF boys fold Cards 70-60Published 11:12am Tuesday, March 12, 2013
Some people questioned how effective Fergus Falls post player Mike Millard would be after a late season injury and if it would slow him down.
Ask the Alexandria Cardinals if Millard seemed different.
Millard dropped in an amazing 28 points and pulled down nine rebounds as the Otters took down the Cardinals in the Section 8AAA semi-final 70-60 at MSUM’s Alex Nemzek Fieldhouse Monday.
The Otters came out establishing their will early as Austin Rund opened the game with a shot from beyond the arc. Fergus would never trail in the game as they were able to leave the court at the break up 32-22.
The Cardinals struggled with their low post game as star player Logan Doyle was limited to only two points in the first half.
In the second half, Fergus came out with a slower tempo as they looked to control the game.
A momentum shift for the Cardinals came in an unlikely place as Head Coach Forrest Witt received a technical foul after an apparent missed shot foul.
“Their kids came out with some new energy after that,” Otters coach Dave Rund said. “It was almost like we woke them up, but our guys stayed calm and finished the job.”
Alexandria was able to capitalize as they used a full court press to force turnovers and respond with deep three point shots by John Vogeler.
Fergus, although sometimes sloppy, was able to use the defense to their advantage as they snuck passes into the lane for easy buckets.
Alexandria continued to fight in the game, but for every punch they threw at the Otters, they saw an equal or more effective counterpunch come back their way.
“I’m just so proud of these guys right now and how hard they fought through the season. I’m glad we have one more shot,” Rund added.
Millard scored 17 of his 28 points in the first half as the Otters celebrated a return to the section title game.
Austin Rund was the only other Otter in double figures scoring with 17 tallies, but the team shot a great 54 percent from the field and hit 20 of 28 free throws in the win.
David Kravinek led the Cardinals with 16 points, while Vogeler finished with 14. Doyle struggled against the Otter post players Millard, Reece Johnson and Joe Gaworski as the tandem limited the Alexandria big man to nine points, seven coming from the charity stripe.
The Otters will now travel to St. Cloud State to take on the Sartell-St. Stephen Sabres Thursday at 6 p.m. in the section final.
In their two regular season meetings, the Fergus boys have edged the Sabres twice by scores of 63-59 and 61-59.
ALEXANDRIA (60) — David Krivanek 16, John Vogeler 14, John Gorghuber 10, , Logan Doyle 9, Brandon Bistodeau 7, Chase Kohler 3, Ted Deitz 1. FG – 18/42 3’s – 7/21 FT – 17/21 PF – 21 FO: Doyle, Bistodeau
FERGUS FALLS (70) — Mike Millard 28, Austin Rund 17, Reece Johnson 6, Jackson McAllister 5, Drew Pearson 4, Joe Gaworski 4, Isaiah Lemke 3, Brady Hansen 2, Drew Reinertson 1. FG – 22/35 3’s – 2/9 FT – 20/28 PF – 18
ALEX 22 38 — 60
FF 32 38 — 70