Three-pointers carry Craig over Sun Prairie
Craig made seven of its 10 first half three-pointers for a 32-21 halftime lead and held on for the 56-44 win in a Big Eight Conference game.
“It is kind of ironic, because coach Suter said, ‘No three-pointers until the ball gets inside,’ and I don’t think we went inside much in that first quarter,” Craig senior Lucas Burns said.
“We start out most games shooting like that, but tonight they were going in, and everyone was making the extra pass, and we were knocking them down for once.”
Instead, it was Sun Prairie’s Jay Swanson who got upset after seeing his Cardinals (5-12, 4-9) suffer through an eight-minute scoring drought. The first-year coach slammed down his water bottle while disputing a foul call as the Craig lead grew to 32-13 after a 15-0 run with 1:16 left in the first half.
Kyke Goike and Cooper Cullen opened Craig’s second-quarter run with back-to-back three-pointers as the Cougars connected on six of their first eight three-point attempts.
Sun Prairie closed the half with an 8-0 finish, but the damage was done.
The Cougars (8-4, 12-5) finished with nine three-pointers in 20 attempts against the Sun Prairie’s 2-3 zone defense.
“I love the zone because most times you can pick it apart,” said Burns, who had four three-pointers and 23 points. “Most of our team are shooters, so we all love zones.”
Cullen added three three-pointers and 13 points, while teammate JoJo Pregont had a double-double with 10 points and 10 rebounds. Craig also outrebounded Sun Prairie, 34-24.
Mike Munz had 17 points to lead Sun Prairie, which was coming off a 60-47 loss to Madison Memorial on Thursday.
The Cardinals pulled within 37-30 in the third quarter on Munz’s deep three-pointer, but Burns answered on the next possession with a deep three-pointer of his own. Goike then added a layup to close out the quarter and end the Cardinals’ only threat.
“I was concerned coming off the two days we had off because of the weather,” said Suter, whose team could not practice Wednesday and Thursday because of the weather-related school closings. “But they came out ready to play. And when the ball goes in, you look pretty good.
“The thing that pleased me the most was our unselfish play. We moved the ball against that zone and got good looks and knocked them down.”
CRAIG 56, SUN PRAIRIE 44
Craig (56)—Cullen, 4-2-13; Goike, 3-0-8; Pregont, 4-2-10; Burns, 8-3-23; Koeberl, 1-0-2. Totals: 20-7-56.
Sun Prairie (44)—Handel, 1-2-5; Cobb, 2-0-4; Boos, 2-0-4; Munz, 7-0-17; Walden, 1-1-3; McIlquham, 2-0-4; Enstad, 1-0-2; Wright, 0-1-1; Rhode, 1-0-2; Opps, 1-0-2. Totals: 18-4-44.
Janesville Craig 17 15 10 14—56
Sun Prairie 13 8 9 14—44
Three-point goals—Craig 9 (Cullen 3, Burns 4, Goike 2), Sun Prairie 4 (Munz 3, Handel) Free throws missed—Craig 5, Sun Prairie 3. Total fouls—Craig 11, Sun Prairie 10.
Sophomores—Sun Prairie 63, Craig 42.