Edgerton's boys clinch Rock Valley North crown
EDGERTON—The Edgerton High gymnasium needs a couple of new basketball nets.
The Crimson Tide boys basketball team cut the old ones down after winning its first conference title in six years.
The Tide led from nearly start to finish Friday night but had to hold off a pesky McFarland team, 53-45. The victory moved the Tide to 13-1 in the Rock Valley North. The win clinched a title share, and East Troy’s loss at Jefferson means the Tide are outright champs with just their third league title since 1991.
“We crossed one of our goals off the list,” Edgerton senior forward Adam Converse said. “We've still got some work to do. We've got good teamwork, and that helps in these games. It's a team mentality.”
In that sense, the title-clinching effort was fitting.
Junior Jacob Zeimet had 12 points and James Fox added 10, but all seven players who scored had at least two buckets. Converse and Cullen Oren each pitched in eight as Edgerton worked to find matchup advantages throughout the game.
“I wouldn't have had it any other way. That teamwork is what got us here and that's what brought us home tonight,” Tide coach Jason Knott said. “Guys step up and we look for mismatches and try to take advantage of that.
“For our four seniors, this was a long time coming.”
After a tight first quarter, Edgerton used a 12-2 run to open the second, taking a 24-12 lead.
McFarland, which got 19 of its 21 first-half points from Sean Chislom and Benjamin Rounds, trailed by just six at halftime. Those two finished with 18 and 17 points, respectively, as the Tide worked to silence their supporting cast.
“(Chad) Herbst had 16 against us in the first game at McFarland,” Knott said. “We said, 'Let's not let that happen, and we'll get it.'”
Edgerton led by 10 again early in the fourth quarter, but it could never quite pull away to a comfortable margin.
McFarland clawed back within five twice down the stretch, including 44-39 with 2:12 to play. But Edgerton forced back-to-back turnovers and scored both times at the offensive end and then closed out the game at the free-throw line.
“We clinched at least a tie, and we want it on our own, but to do it in front of our fans was what we wanted,” said Knott, whose team needs to win at Evansville or Clinton next week to win the league title outright.
Knott will argue for the region's top seed in the Division 3 bracket when area coaches meet today. The Tide also host Monona Grove in a nonconference game next week as they tune up for tournament time.
The nets will look a little whiter on Tuesday.
EDGERTON 53, McFARLAND 45
McFarland (45)—Herbst, 1-0-2; Witt, 2-0-6; Chislom, 6-5-18; Rounds, 8-1-17; Kopp, 1-0-2. Totals: 18-6-49.
Edgerton (53)—Oren, 4-0-8; Johnson, 1-4-6; Fox, 3-3-10; Williams, 2-0-4; Converse, 3-2-8; Deegan, 2-1-5; Zeimet, 6-0-12. Totals: 21-10-53.
McFarland 10 11 7 17—45
Edgerton 12 15 9 17—53
Three-point goals—McFarland 3 (Witt 2, Chislom), Edgerton 1 (Fox). Free throws missed—McFarland 3, Edgerton 7. Total fouls—McFarland 17, Edgerton 14.