Beaver Dam’s boys basketball team brought an unbeaten record and a state ranking to the Janesville Parker High gym Tuesday night.
The Beavers were 11-0 and ranked sixth in the state in Division 2.
The Vikings weren’t impressed.
Parker overcome an early 15-point deficit thanks to a dominant second half in a 69-56 nonconference win.
Trailing by one at half, the Vikings poured in 47 points in a near-perfect second half. Robert DeLong led the way with 17 points, while Brenden Weis added 14 and Matthew Hartwig had all 13 of his points in the second half for Parker.
Hartwig said there was no panic in the Vikings despite a 23-8 deficit midway through the first half.
“We’ve all grown up playing basketball together, so we understand the team aspect and where everybody’s going to be and what they’re capable of doing on the court,” Hartwig said. “We learned playing in the Big Eight against quicker, faster and more athletic teams how to calm down, slow down and play your game.
“So when we got down early, we just looked at each other and said we’re fine, we’re only eight minutes in and that our run was coming.”
That run came to close out the first half. Parker scored the final 14 points of the half in cutting the 15-point deficit down to one. Back-to-back 3-pointers by Weis and Kaden Vernon keyed the rally.
Trailing by one at half, Parker took its first lead of the game at 37-34 on Hartwig’s three-point play with 13:27 left.
The Vikings took the lead for good at 50-47 on Jacob Naber’s three-point play with 7:47 remaining.
A 14-3 Parker run sealed the win.
Parker went 11-for-11 at the free-throw line, with all 11 attempts coming in the second half.
Parker coach Matt Bredesen knew his team was facing the gauntlet portion of its schedule with games against Franklin and then three straight against state-ranked teams, including Beaver Dam on Tuesday.
“I thought we played very well in the second half,” Bredesen said. “And we kept them on 23 for a long time.
“We’re putting together a good year. It’s a tough schedule, but that’s what we wanted not being able to play a Big Eight schedule. The Badger Conference is a very good league. We beat a very good Beaver Dam team tonight, and out next two are against Monroe and DeForest.”
Parker plays at unbeaten Monroe on Saturday. The Cheesemakers handed the Vikings one of their four losses this season.
PARKER 69, BEAVER DAM 56
Beaver Dam (56)—Abel 8-3-22; Helbing 1-0-2; Soto 5-1-13; Bunkoske 6-0-15; Kuhl 1-0-3. Totals: 21-4-56
Parker (69)—Thompson 2-0-5; DeLong 4-7-16; Conners 3-0-7; Hartwig 6-1-13; Weis 6-0-14; Vernon 1-2-5; Naber 4-1-9. Totals: 26-11-69
Beaver Dam 23 33—56
Janesville Parker 22 47—69
3-point goals Beaver Dam 10 (Abel 4, Bunkoske 3, Soto 2, Kuhl), Parker 6 (Weis 2, Vernon, DeLong, Thompson, Conners). Free throws missed—Beaver Dam 1, Parker 0. Total fouls—Beaver Dam 10, Parker 7