CENTERVIEW — The depth of Crest Ridge’s scoring attack was on full display on Saturday, Feb. 1, in the Quarry City Classic championship game.
Leeton denied the ball to senior Cole Schmidli at every opportunity and held the senior to a season-low seven points.
“Schmidli is a great player,” Leeton coach Rick Mills said. “We denied him the ball and doubled him anytime he got the ball and he is a great passer, so we wanted to take that away from him too.”
Stopping Schmidli wasn’t enough for the Bulldogs to topple Crest Ridge as Jaden Ring picked up the scoring slack, going for a season-high 19 points to lead the Cougars past Leeton 52-39.
“That’s been happening every game and I’ve told them we just need one person to step up each game,” Crest Ridge coach Brent Behler said. “We have a bunch of kids who are capable of doing lots of things. Tonight, it was Jaden Ring.”
The Cougars got out to an early 17-11 lead with Schmidli scoring his lone five points from the field in the opening quarter.
Leeton did not make a shot from the field in the second quarter for the first four miuntes, 29 seconds of the second quarter while Crest Ridge extended its lead to 25-13.
“It was just a great defensive effort,” Behler said. “I just wanted to come out and be physical, flying around in our trap and taking care of that.”
The Bulldogs pulled within nine by halftime at 29-20.
Crest Ridge opened up a 16-point lead at the onset of the third quarter with an 11-4 run.
The Cougars led 43-29 going into the final frame.
Ring did most of his damage in the final quarter, scoring seven of the Cougars nine points in the quarter as Crest Ridge held Leeton at arms length.
“If someone had told me we were going to hold them in the low 50’s, I’d say we’d have won by 15, but we didn’t,” Mills said. “We didn’t shoot the ball well at all. We had good shots, open shots, but we couldn’t score.”
Daniel Warner, who was named to the All-Tournament team, led the Bulldogs with 13 points.
Clarence Bentin added 10 points.
Noah Scrivener was held scoreless in the loss, but was also named to the All-Tournament squad.
Will Taylor joined Ring as the two Cougars to reach double figures with 10 points.
All-Tournament team selection August Hoeper scored seven points.
Schmidli was named the tournament MVP.
Holden’s Jayden Ring along with Knob Noster’s Kellen Foster were also named to the All-Tournament team.
Knob Noster lost 72-68 in the third place game to Concordia.