By Jeremy Ratliff
Tuesday night, the Bluejay Boys varsity basketball squad opened the doors of the MHS Fieldhouse in welcoming WVC nemesis Marshfield, after a week-long break due to inclement weather.
The Tigers proved formidable as always in the first half, taking a four-point jump on the guys, 26-22.
But then again if there is one area the Jays have proven themselves in this year, it would be resiliency and that was clearly evident in the second half. The Jays locked and loaded at intermission and returned fire with a vengeance, draining 36 points and topping the Tigers for the 62-60 win, their sixth of the season.
“I am really proud of how our team battled and competed,” comments head coach Jake Schalow. “Down seven in three separate occasions, and down six with six minutes to go, our ability to fight back was outstanding. We had contributions from many across the board. It was a great team win, and proved to our team and hopefully the league, that we will be competitive with anyone this year.
“Jared (Ollhoff) made a big play at the end of the game to secure the defensive rebound, and then make both free throws with 3.3 seconds left to help us win.”
As the coach alluded to, the 6’4” junior Ollhoff proved a force to be reckoned while putting up 18 points and displaying a powerhouse effort in crashing the boards with seven total rebounds (7/9 FG, 1/2 3pt, 3/4 FT). Fellow junior Zach Mootz enjoyed an outstanding night with 25 points (7/10 FG, 1/1 3pt, 10/13 FT, 6r, a). Quinn Steckbauer followed through with 8 points (3/9 FG, 2/2 FT, 4r, 3a, 4st).
The guys return to the court Thursday when they take a break from WVC action for a trip north and their annual showdown with the ever-potent Lakeland Thunderbirds. Game time is set for 7:15 p.m.