By Jared Schmeltzer
Tuesday night’s home game against Wausau East was a display on dominance for the Merrill boys basketball team. The Bluejays out classed the Lumberjacks winning 87-48.
Merrill came out of the gates hot putting up a lot of points, outscoring East 48-32 in the first half. Jared Olhoff led the way with 17 first half points followed behind Zach Mootz with 12 points in the half. Despite the amount of points the Bluejays put up, the defense was what stood out to head coach Jake Schalow saying, “I thought from the tip we were much more focused on getting stops and keeping East out of scoring positions, and we were much better than we had been in our first 3 games.”
The second half was more of the same for Merrill outscoring the Lumberjacks 39-16, on the way to their second win of the early season. Jared Olhoff built on his nice first half with eight more points in the second half to give him a personal season high of 25 on the night. Michael Casper wasn’t far behind Olhoff with seven second half points, while also picking up a personal season high of 13 points. Coach Shalow had some high praise for the two saying, “Jared was phenomenal on Tuesday, and he has been very good so far this season shooting at 81% from the floor through 4 games now. I was happy for Michael to get some shots to fall. He has shown an ability to shoot it at a high level throughout practice, and for him to get some live game reps to fall will only help him, and our team, moving forward.”
“I would still like us to limit our opponents offensive rebounds.” comments
coach Shalow, continuing to say; “We have given up 10+ offensive rebounds in three of our four games and is something that we need to clean up as we
head into conference play.”
Merrill had four players crack double digits in the scoring column. Jared Olhoff led all scorers with 25 points on 9/11 shooting. Olhoff also brought down three rebounds and had two assists in the game. Zach Mootz put up 14 points in the game to go with 13 rebounds, four assists and three steals. Michael Casper had a season high 13 points on 5/9 shooting to go with his two rebounds and two assists. Quinn Steckbauer had 10 points on 100% shooting from the field (three shots) and from the free throw line (five attempts).
The Bluejays will continue with their conference play as Wausau West comes to town this Friday for a double header. The boys will play the late game starting at 7:45 p.m.
If you missed the Bluejays home game against Hortonville on Tuesday, 12/05/17, you can watch the entire game here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ILjm9ZtbC7o&t=845s