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AlBrook gives undefeated MIB a run, falls 74-53

When looking on paper, the AlBrook boys basketball team has won just one game this season compared to Mountain Iron-Buhl, who has yet to lose. But basketball games aren't played on paper and the Falcons made sure they gave the undefeated Rangers ...

When looking on paper, the AlBrook boys basketball team has won just one game this season compared to Mountain Iron-Buhl, who has yet to lose.

But basketball games aren't played on paper and the Falcons made sure they gave the undefeated Rangers all they could handle on Monday night in Alborn.

In a near-capacity filled gym, host AlBrook ran up and down the floor early on, as they kept pace with a physical MIB squad (9-0 overall; 1-0 Arrowhead Conference). However, the sheer size and depth of the Rangers proved to be too much for the Falcons, as they were toppled 74-53.

But don't let the score fool you; the win was no walk in the park for MIB.

From the opening tip, AlBrook (1-7 overall; 1-0 St. Louis County Conference) opened up an early 16-8 advantage on the Rangers, as their three-point attack buried an array of long-range bombs from beyond the arc.

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However, MIB's inside style of play was tough for the small Falcons team to slow down and the Rangers went on 19-9 run to end the half up 34-31.

After the break, MIB kept scoring as if the first frame never ended, starting the second half on an 8-0 run and going in front of AlBrook 42-31. From then on, head coach Damien Paulson and his AlBrook club couldn't get any closer, as the Rangers increased their lead by as much as 28, en route to the victory.

However, even after the loss, Paulson knew his team played a challenging MIB club.

"We played a very tough team out there tonight," said Paulson about Rangers. "We just came out a little too flat and fell apart in the second half."

The Falcons were guided by their junior captain, forward Kolten Karppinen, who poured in a team-leading 13 points, while fellow junior forward Travis Behning followed with 11 on the night.

Sophomore sensation Bryce Karppinen was stellar at the point guard position as he totaled nine points, while senior guard Nate Fremling posted six points and sophomore guard Trevin Malvick collected five in the loss.

Junior forward Damondtaye Gaines played hard on the blocks for AlBrook, racking up three points, while junior guard Tony Williams, junior forward John Kochevar and sophomore forward Tim Nelson each recorded a bucket on the evening.

MIB was also directed by their captain, senior guard Steven Golobich, who cashed in a game-high 28 points, while junior forward Jordan Deutsch scored 19 and senior center Joe Ringler dispatched 14 points in the win.

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The Falcons will now take the week lightly, as they will be off until Monday, Jan. 12, when they are set to travel to Carlton to collide with the Bulldogs at 7:30 p.m. They will meet the Braves of Orr the following evening, Tuesday, Jan. 13, in Orr, with tip-off at 7:30 p.m.

Though the Falcons have just one win on paper, Paulson knows that when it comes to game time, his team can play with anyone.

"We still need to work on some things, but there's no doubt in my mind that we're going to get better," said Paulson. "If we play like we can, we can compete with any of these teams."

Related Topics: BASKETBALL
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