Bulldogs Get Booted
Suffer Heartbreaking 48-46
Overtime Loss To Tomahawk
In Division 3 Regional Finals
One of the most successful seasons in Peshtigo Bulldog boys basketball history came to a screeching halt Saturday night in a heartbreaking 48-46 overtime loss to visiting Tomahawk in the Division 3 regional finals.
Heartbreaking? Just ask the large contingent of blue and white backers that saw their Bulldogs get knocked off in overtime. Peshtigo had everything stacked in its favor for the title game and a berth in the sectionals...number one seed, homecourt advantage and taking on a Tomahawk squad that went 2-10 in the Great Northern Conference. When the final buzzer sounded it was the 12-12 Hatchets moving on to the sectional level where they will meet Little Chute Thursday at Antigo High School.
This was a tough way to end a really nice season. Our kids have a lot to be proud with another M-O title, but we obviously didnt achieve one of our goals, which was to reach the sectionals, Peshtigo coach Ryan Spaulding said. When I came here these kids were in sixth grade and we grew together over the years. Tonight it came down to Tomahawk making a few more plays than we did.
The D-3 title clash wasnt the only struggle for Peshtigo in the regionals. Hosting 5-18 Oconto Falls Friday in the semifinals, the Bulldogs trailed 50-45 with 7 minutes remaining in the game before rallying for a 64-54 win.
Berth, Neumann Spark
Bulldogs To 64-54 Win
Over Oconto Falls Fri.
With their one-two senior punch of Jordan Berth and Zach Neumann combining for 41 points, the Bulldogs rallied to top Oconto Falls in the semifinals Friday 64-54.
Berth burned the Oconto Falls defense for 22 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists and 3 steals while Neumann connected on 6 of 13 shots for 19 points. He also hauled down 4 rebounds, registered a trio of steals and dished out two assists. Neumann was at his best when the Bulldogs needed him the most....in the fourth quarter. Neumann was on fire to open the final frame, scoring 11 straight points to help overcome a 50-45 deficit.
Oconto Falls really shot the ball well while we played uncharacteristically of ourselves, Spaulding said. Our seniors stepped up big time in the fourth quarter to get us over the hump. Zach and Jordan were pressing early and tried to do somethings early in the game that werent there. We finally settled down in the fourth quarter and prevailed.
This was a good test for our kids and we were fortunate in how we played. Right now it is all about winning and moving on. And that is what we did.
Finding the mark on five treys in the opening quarter, Oconto Falls turned some heads by taking a 20-18 lead. Berth scored 10 points to keep his mates within striking distance at the first break.
Failing to make any threes in the second frame, Oconto Falls saw the Bulldogs run off an 11-8 edge to go up 29-28 at halftime. Southpaw shooting Darius Dohl drilled a trey to put Peshtigo up 25-24 (3:23) while Berth canned a paint jumper for a 27-24 spread. A pair of buckets by 68 Michael Fifield put the Panthers back on top 28-27 with 0:39 left in the half before Neumann canned two free throws with 17 ticks left for a 29-28 Bulldog lead.
Fifield accounted for 10 points in the third quarter, including a pair of threes, as the Panthers ran off a 22-16 edge to lead 50-45. Berth registered two jumpers in the final 38 seconds to keep Peshtigo close.
With the game on the line, the Bulldogs and Neumann went to work in period four. Holding Oconto Falls scoreless for nearly five minutes, Peshtigo opened the frame on a 12-0 run. Getting open looks, Neumann connected three times from behind the arc in a span of one minute then added a 5-footer for a 56-50 Bulldog upper hand (3:56). Berth tacked on a free throw and Peshtigo completed the 12-0 run at the 3:39 mark.
Two free throws by Bo Shroyer got Oconto Falls within 57-52 before AJ Woller and Levi Sanborn tallied baskets for a comfortable 63-52 edge with 1:40 left.
We beat them for 26 minutes, but unfortunately they won the final 6 and the game. We got tired down the stretch. This was one of our best games of the year, even though Peshtigo won, Oconto Falls coach Kirk Hirst said.
In Regional Finals
Peshtigo saw its tourney run end Saturday night in a shocking 48-46 overtime loss to Tomahawk. Showing plenty of patience and relying on a defensive scheme that limited the effectiveness of Jordan Berth and Zach Neumann, Tomahawk was able to pull off the upset.
Tomahawk did what it had to do to win...made the little plays like hustle more for loose balls, didnt make many mistakes and were efficient on the offensive end, Spaulding commented. We had our opportunities but didnt make plays when we had to.
In their final high school games, Berth scored 12 points, only 4 in the second half and overtime while Neumann added 7 points, 3 coming in the third quarter and none in the fourth period or overtime. Sophomore Logan Noffke tallied 11 points for Peshtigo, including 8 straight to open the game.
Fletcher Schoone connected on five 3s for Tomahawk while finishing with a game high 17 points. After scoring just two points in the first half, Schoone shredded the Bulldogs for 15 points the remainder of the game.
Taking time off the clock with every possession, Tomahawk controlled the tempo and tied the score at 10-10 after 8 minutes. Noffke put his mates up 5-2 with a baseline runner and a three pointer then added a conventional three-point play for an 8-6 lead at the 2:02 mark. A tip-in by Neumann kept Peshtigo on top 10-8 before Justin Jarvensivu scored with 37 seconds left for the deadlock.
Trailing 14-11, Peshtigo used a three point play by Berth (5:10) along with a three point shot from Noffke to pry open an 18-14 lead with 4 minutes left in the half. The lead didnt last long as the Hatchets used baskets by Chris Schoone along with a three point play from Jared Jarvensivu to go up 19-18 (2:47). The Bulldogs had an answer and closed out the half on a 6-0 run as Neumann hit on a pair of free throws while Berth added a jumper and then was fouled at the buzzer for two charity tosses and a 24-19 spread.
In the third quarter, southpaw Darius Dohl came off the Bulldog bench to hit a jumper followed by a trey for a 29-24 (3:37). Things got even better when Brendon Thomas fired in a trey pushing the Peshtigo cushion to 32-24 at the 2:46 mark. But Tomahawk wouldnt quit. Fletcher Schoone found the mark on a pair of three point shots for a 32-30 deficit (1:36).
Neumann gave his mates some breathing room at 35-30 with a three point play only to see Jared Jarvensivu score a trio of late points.
In the fourth quarter, Jordan Roessler got Tomahawk even on a tip-in before Woller worked inside for a 37-35 Peshtigo lead with 7:05 remaining. On the next possession the Bulldogs ran into more trouble as Berth was whistled for his fourth foul (6:36).
Levi Sanborn added a baseline drive to put the Bulldogs back in the lead 39-38 with 3:44 left before Schoone fired in a timely three to give Tomahawk a 41-39 edge (3:04). Points were tough to come by the rest of the way with Berth taking a lob pass and making his way to the hoop to tie things up at 41-41 at the 1:41 mark. That was all the scoring for regulation as both teams came up empty on late shots resulting in overtime.
Tomahawk continued to dictate the tempo and opened the 4 minute extra session on a 5-0 run. Lorne Ahrens canned a jumper and Schooner his fifth trey of the game (1:53) for a 46-41 spread. Woller got the Bulldogs back in the game with a clutch three point shot (1:38) only to see Jared Jarvensivu make two free throws for a 48-44 edge with 51.5 seconds left.
Working the ball around, Peshtigo freed up Berth for a jumper to close within 48-46 (0:42). The offenses took the rest of the game off as both teams misfired on shots. Tomahawk played keep away and came up empty on a 3 on 1 break. Getting the ball back, Peshtigo called timeout with 15 seconds left to set up a game-tieing shot. It never happened as the Tomahawk defense prevented a good look at the basket as the buzzer sounded.
Our plan was not to give 15 (Neumann) any open looks on the perimeter as well as front 13 (Berth) and give back side help. I know it wasnt perfect, but was good enough to win the game, Tomahawk coach Tim Albert said. We play in a league that has five Division 2 teams which helped prepare us for situations like this. Early in the year we tried being a running team but that didnt suit us very well. We changed around mid-season and are now playing at the pace we are comfortable with.
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