Matt Bredesen continues to see progress in his Janesville Parker boys basketball team.

The next step, the first-year coach said, is closing out games.

The Vikings were within five points in the heart of the second half at Sun Prairie on Tuesday night, but the Cardinals pulled away late for a 72-60 Big Eight Conference victory.

Parker fell to 0-4 overall and 0-3 in league play.

“We’re taking steps forward,” Bredesen said. “We’re getting to the point where our kids believe they’re going to be competitive every night. And now they just need to finish games. We had some opportunities tonight but gave up a few too many offensive rebounds, and their trap forced us into some turnovers.

Sun Prairie led by just six at halftime but pulled away to a 13-point lead in the opening minutes of the second half.

The Vikings then put together a run to get back within five, 49-44, before the Cardinals stretched their advantage back to double digits down the stretch.

Alex Voigt led Sun Prairie with 18 points.

Brady Biba had 16 for Parker, which plays at Madison La Follette on Friday night.

“It’s just cleaning up a couple different things and taking the next step,” Bredesen said. “From Game 1 in Stoughton until now, we’ve seen a lot of positives and good progress.”

SUN PRAIRIE 72, PARKER 60

Parker (60)—Dahlke 2-0-6, DeLong 3-2-11, Biba 6-4-16, A.J. Thompson 1-1-4, E. Thompson 2-0-5, Weis 1-2-4, Curry 1-2-4, Hartwig 4-2-10. Totals: 20-13-60.

Sun Prairie (72)—Williams 3-2-11, Cameron 1-0-2, Warhle 0-6-6, Austin 4-2-11, Hawk 1-0-2, B. Voigt 4-3-11, Hughes 2-6-11, A. Voigt 6-6-18. Totals: 21-25/30

Janesville Parker 26 34—60

Sun Prairie 32 40—72

3-point goals—Parker 6 (Dahlke 2, DeLong 2, A. Thompson, E. Thompson), Sun Prairie 5 (Williams 3, Austin, Hughes). Free throws missed—Parker 7, Sun Prairie 5. Total fouls—Parker 23, Sun Prairie 20. Fouled out—Curry.

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