Christian picks up first Big East win

By Dave Boehler
Beacon sports editor

It wasn’t for first place or anything close to that.

Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah’s Austin Henschel (No. 10) and Sheboygan Christian’s Joe Lemmenes (No. 23) battle for a rebound Friday.

Actually, it was a fight to get out of last place.

But that doesn’t mean the boys basketball battle between visiting Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah and Sheboygan Christian on Friday was not important.

“We talked about nothing is given in this conference, so you better go take it when you can,” Eagles’ coach Brett Flipse said. “So coming into this game, we knew that it was big for both teams.”

Christian defeated ELG, 60-31, and picked up its first Big East Conference win to improve to 1-9 (2-11 overall) while the Resorters fell to 0-10 (1-14 overall) after losing their sixth game in a row.

“We were looking forward to this game,” said ELG’s Bryce Sitko, who had a team-high eight points. “We thought it was going to be our chance to get the win. We were disappointed at the outcome. We didn’t play up to our standards; that just disappointed everybody.”

Another reason the outcome was important is both teams are in the same playoff bracket.

“For seeding meetings, this was a big game for us as well,” Flipse said.

The Eagles’ Michael Modahl attempts a layup Friday in his team’s victory over the Resorters.

Christian defeated ELG for the ninth consecutive time, as Trevor Wisse finished with 18 points and Michael Modahl added 13. Matt Alsum and Sam Hendrikse each totaled eight points.

Eagle Joe Lemmenes, just one of two seniors on the team, says despite the losing record, his squad has been practicing hard all year.

“The results just weren’t coming,” Lemmenes said. “We were trying hard, but we’ve been having progressively better practices and the results just showed.”

Another difference in the game was energy, according to the Eagles’ coach.

“The key was the energy we came out with,” he said. “Where when we play Sheboygan Lutheran or Oostburg or Howards Grove, we’re just not sure we can win so we don’t come out with that kind of energy.”

A 14-0 run to end the first half was also big.

After scoring 10 of the first 12 points of the game, Christian increased its lead to 22-11 when it went on its scoring spree.

It began with a jumper by Wisse. Lemmenes hit a three-pointer and then sank a shot from inside the post with 25 seconds to go.

Levi Ahles (No. 30) plays defense Friday against ELG as teammate Joe Lemmenes (No. 23) looks on.

With 3 seconds left, Wisse made a three-pointer from the corner for a 36-11 halftime advantage.

“It was big,” Wisse said. “I think it was good just to see us get rolling and especially give us momentum for the second half. Once we get up by a few more points, we’re just more comfortable and we can start playing our game.”

Unfortunately for ELG, its team was unable to do that.

“I just think we didn’t come out with enough energy, we were weak with the ball, we didn’t really execute our plays very well, so all in all, it was just a rough game,” Sitko said. “We didn’t play as strong as we should’ve.”

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