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Rebels down Bombers in rivalry game

In high school sports, there is nothing that brings out more passion than a rivalry with a school right next door. Such is the case when Moose Lake-Willow River and Barnum get together on the hard court in high school boys basketball.

Barnum senior Kyle Kielty makes a drive to the net with Moose Lake-Willow River's Thomas Gulso working to block his progress in Friday's matchup in Barnum. Dan Saletel/Pine Journal
Barnum senior Kyle Kielty makes a drive to the net with Moose Lake-Willow River's Thomas Gulso working to block his progress in Friday's matchup in Barnum. Dan Saletel/Pine Journal

In high school sports, there is nothing that brings out more passion than a rivalry with a school right next door. Such is the case when Moose Lake-Willow River and Barnum get together on the hard court in high school boys basketball.

The two local power houses hooked up in a thrilling game Friday, Dec. 8, in Barnum with the visiting Rebels sneaking out of town with a 47-44 win over the Bombers.

Both teams faced long stretches where they struggled at getting the ball through the hoop.

In the first half, the Bombers managed to gain a one-point lead, but the Rebels were able to do just enough to garner the three-point win by winning the second half.

"We had a few guys get in foul trouble in the first half which put us in a few rotations where we just couldn't score," Rebel coach Wes Cummins said. "We went about five minutes without a bucket at the end of the first half until Ryan Barrett hit a 3-pointer at the horn."

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Those sentiments were also echoed on the other side of the floor from longtime Barnum coach Rich Newman.

"We were able to get some put-backs in the beginning of the game to give us a small lead," Newman said. "Then we would go long stretches without scoring. Otherwise, we shot the ball poorly, especially in the second half."

The Rebels had three players in double-figure scoring with Ryan Barrett leading the way with 15 points while Avery Kosloski added 14 and Adam Dragicevich added 12. Meanwhile the Bombers got a solid effort from Tyler Nynas who led all scorers with 19 points.

"In the second half, we were able to get back to what we wanted to do," Cummins said. "It was a bit more of a half-court game. We were able to get a few buckets in transition, but Barnum does a great job of dictating the pace of play and forcing you to play their style of game."

Rounding out the scoring for the Rebels were Thomas Gulso with four points and Brady Watrin with two points.

Both teams made 17 shots from the field and four shots from the 3-point line. The Rebels went 9 of 16 from the free-throw line, while the Bombers were just 6 of 16 from the line. That is where the three-point difference in the final score came into play.

Also scoring for Barnum were Kyle Kielty with eight points; Sam Goodwin added seven; Drake Weets had five; Braeden Hlavka scored three; and Tony Robins chipped in a pair of points.

The Rebels are bringing back three senior starters: Kosloski, Gulso and Barrett.

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"They will be looked upon for leadership because all three have bought into our system early and have done a great job," Cummins said. "Aside from those three, we have a surplus of talented, inexperienced underclassmen. Junior Adam Dragicevich has made himself into a player for us. Sophomore Michael Olson is another kid who worked his tail off this summer and it paid off for him as he worked his way into a starting gig, but unfortunately, he ruptured his Achilles tendon in our second game and will miss the rest of the season."

Moose Lake-Willow River's Avery Kosloski works to get a shot past Barnum's Samuel Goodwin during Friday night's boys basketball action in Barnum. Kosloski scored 14 points in the 47-44 Rebels win. Dan Saletel/Pine Journal
Moose Lake-Willow River's Avery Kosloski works to get a shot past Barnum's Samuel Goodwin during Friday night's boys basketball action in Barnum. Kosloski scored 14 points in the 47-44 Rebels win. Dan Saletel/Pine Journal

Related Topics: BARNUMBOYS BASKETBALL
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