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Spartans contain Southeast’s running game

Published: Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013 12:01 p.m. CST

BEATRICE, Neb. — The Southwestern men tuned up for an important final week of the conference season with a quality road win Saturday, 62-53, over Southeast Nebraska Community College.

The Spartans outscored the Storm 33-25 in the second half after holding a 29-28 edge at the break.

Southwestern (14-13) boosted the lead to nine points with about 10 minutes left, but Southeast closed it to one with 4:00 to play.

“We had a big play by Patrick Wright on a post feed, and two free throws by Delby Halcomb to put us up 48-44,” coach Mike Holmes said. “Then we just made a couple of stops and made some free throws.”

For the game, Southwestern was 21-of-24 at the line including a 9-11 performance by Marquealis Edwards, who scored a team-high 15 points along with six assists and three steals.

Also scoring in double figures with 10 each were Devin Kastrup, Jack Harrison and Wright. Kastrup collected a team-high eight rebounds.

The style of play favored Southwestern, Holmes noted.

“We kept them in the halfcourt, which was important,” Holmes said. “If they get out and run, they’re one of the top two teams we face this year. We only had three offensive rebounds, but that was by design. I said unless it’s a gimme, get back and make them set up offense.”

The scramble for a top-four position in the league standings, and a chance to serve as a regional first-round host, was further complicated Saturday as Iowa Central upset league-leader Iowa Lakes, 63-61, in overtime. At 7-6, Iowa Central is just in front of 6-6 Southwestern for the fourth spot.

Kirkwood, another top team, was beaten 73-65 by Ellsworth to fall into third at 7-5. Kirkwood hosts Southwestern Wednesday before the Spartans return home for a huge 3 p.m. league finale Saturday against Iowa Central.

Prior to that game, longtime SWCC coach and athletic director Ron “Fox” Clinton will be the first inductee into the Southwestern Athletics Hall of Fame.

“We were cheering for Iowa Lakes (against Iowa Central) in that one,” Holmes admitted. “But we still kind of control our destiny with Iowa Central. If we beat them, we will win the tiebreaker with them. It would have been nice to have some wiggle room, but we don’t. And Kirkwood, if we can get them, we also win the tiebreak with them.”

Holmes said the pack of teams is more closely aligned than any season he’s coached in the league, creating an exciting final week of competition.

“Usually one or two teams have separated themselves by now,” Holmes said. “This year, not quite so much. It’s been a matter of who can win the close games, and to their credit, Iowa Lakes has done a good job of that down the stretch.”

Current league standings: 1. Iowa Lakes 10-3; 2. Ellsworth 8-4; 3 Kirkwood 7-5; 4. Iowa Central 7-6; 5. Southwestern 6-6; 6. DMACC 6-7; 7. NIACC 5-7; 8. Clinton 1-12.

Remaining games include Ellsworth at NIACC and SWCC at Kirkwood on Wednesday, followed by a Saturday schedule of NIACC at Clinton, Kirkwood at DMACC and Ellsworth at Iowa Lakes while Iowa Central visits SWCC.

SOUTHEAST NEB. (53) — Tyrell Corlew 5-14 2-4 14, Delquan Thomas 5-18 1-4 13, Trey Porter 1-7 4-5 6, Leldon Love 2-7 2-2 6, Josh Roberts 3-8 0-0 6, Jarrod Gamble 1-9 2-2 4, Thomas McKay 1-2 0-0 2, Michael Johnson 0-2 1-2 1, Jordan Brooks 0-2 1-2 1. Totals — 18 13-21 53. FG shooting — 18-71 (25.4 percent). 3-point goals — 4-20 (Corfew 2, Thomas 2). Rebounds — 47 (Corfew 11).  Assists — 7 (Porter 2, Corfew 2, Thomas 2). Steals — 6 (Thomas 2). Blocked shots — 1 (Porter 1). Turnovers — 14. Team fouls — 23. Fouled out  — Love.

SOUTHWESTERN (62) — Marquealis Edwards 3-9 9-11 15, Patrick Wright 4-7 2-2 10, Devin Kastrup 4-9 2-2 10, Jack Harrison 3-5 3-3 10, Marcus Littleton 2-5 0-0 6, Delby Halcomb 0-4 5-6 5, Jared Theis 2-4 0-0 4, Larry Mason 1-1 0-0 2. Totals — 19 21-24 62. FG shooting — 19-46 (41.3 percent). 3-point goals — 3-10 (Littleton 2, Harrison 1). Rebounds — 39 (Kastrup 8, Edwards 7, Mason 5, Harrison 4, Littleton 4).  Assists — 12 (Edwards 6, Harrison 2). Steals — 5 (Edwards 3). Blocked shots — 1 (Kastrup 1). Turnovers — 15. Team fouls — 17. Fouled out  — None.

Southeast — 28 53

SWCC — 29 62

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