Someville sparks Parker over La Follette
The win improved Parker’s conference record to 2-7 heading in to the second half of the season. Viking coach Ryan Masterson said the come-from-behind victory was especially satisfying after Thursday’s loss to crosstown rival Craig.
“That was a tough loss to Craig in a game we could have won,” Masterson said. “I was concerned there would be a letdown.”
Masterson’s players showed no signs of a Craig hangover. Parker played the Lancers even from the opening tipoff and made a game-winning run in the fourth quarter. After surging ahead 71-62 with three minutes left in the game, La Follette was forced to start fouling to get the ball. That’s when Somerville took control of the game.
“Of course there’s pressure on you in that situation,” said Somerville, a 90 percent free throw shooter on the season. “But, I just went to the line and concentrated on my routine. It’s not just me, however. My teammates got me the ball when we knew they had to foul.”
In the last 34.9 seconds, Somerville went six-for-six from the line to seal the win for Parker.
“We played well all four quarters,” Masterson. “Tonight, there was no letdown in the final eight minutes.”
While Somerville stepped up in the final minutes of the game from the free throw line, Parker’s Decker Thompson was a dominant player for the Vikings the entire game. He led the team with 21 points and was a key player at both ends of the court, especially in the fourth quarter when the Vikings denied La Follette second shots.
In the final quarter, despite a swarming La Follette press, Parker committed only one turnover while the Lancers turned the ball over 12 times.
“We just got sick of losing games in the final quarter,” Thompson said. “We put it all together tonight and played the kind of game we all know we are capable of.”
The game was tied 11 times before Parker took the lead for good at 54-53 with 7:21 remaining. The Vikings extended their lead to 71-62 with less than three minutes remaining, but the Lancers came back on two 3-point goals from Matt Hunter and TD West to narrow Parker’s lead to three at 73-70 with a minute left.
Parker controlled the ball in the final minute causing La Follette to foul. Somerville then took over.
“This is an important win for us as we head into the second half of the season,” Masterson said. “La Follette is a top-tier team and we showed we can compete at that level.”
Things won’t get easier for Parker as the season’s second half begins. The Vikings take on the league’s two top undefeated teams in Madison Memorial and Middleton.
Parker hosts Madison Memorial on Friday and travels to Middleton Saturday.
“It’s a tough back-to-back challenge,” Masterson said, “but if we play like we did tonight, we’ll make them work for anything they get.”
PARKER 78, LA FOLLETTE 74
Janesville Parker (78)—Somerville, 3-16-21; Smith, 5-1-11; Albeck, 5-1-11; D. Thompson, 10-0-21; Grafft, 3-3-9; Treinen, 0-3-3; Palan, 0-2-2. Totals: 25-26-78.
Madison La Follette (74)—Drury, 3-4-10; Morgan, 4-2-11; Hunter, 9-5-27; Thomas, 1-0-3; Ampe, 1-0-2; West, 6-0-15; Brunner, 1-0-2; Plather, 2-0-4. Totals: 27-11-74.
Janesville Parker 16 16 18 28—78
Madison La Follette 16 20 17 21—74
Three-point goals—Parker 2 (Somerville, D. Thompson), La Follette 9 (Morgan, Hunter 4, Thomas, West 3). Free throws missed—Parker 5, La Follette 3. Total fouls—Parker 13, La Follette 22. Fouled out—West.
Sophomores—La Follette 57, Parker 50. Parker’s leading scorers: Nauer 10, Osmond 9, Buck 9, Theisen 9.