North Lives up to Ranking in Runaway Win
by Pat Rupp
University of Wisconsin recruit Nathan Reuvers scored 35 points and No. 3-rated Lakeville North shot a red-hot 61 percent from the field in a 104-71 win over the Tigers Tuesday night at Tiger Gym.
“We don’t have anyone of Reuvers’ size,” Tiger coach Tharen Johnson said of the 6-10 senior standout. “Miles’ (Mendes) athleticism was our best chance against him.
“Miles battled him well early but we lost him in transition a couple times for open three’s and then Miles let him catch too low, especially in the second half…When a player that size of his caliber gets the ball in that position, it’s not going to end well.”
The contest was close early as Caden Freetly scored eight points, including a pair of three-pointers, to put the home team on top 10-8. North led just 21-16 with 9:30 to play in the half but gradually pulled away to lead 49-37 at intermission.
Sam Wilson and Freetly led the first half charge for Farmington with 13 and 10 points respectively.
“Sam showed how good he can be tonight,” Johnson said. “We asked him to do a lot, bringing up the ball and guarding their quickest guy. Sam did all that and led us in scoring with Reuvers guarding him a good portion of the game.
“Caden has been playing well for us, too. He was very good at helping beat their pressure defensively and he keeps contributing more offensively as well.”
North came out on fire in the second half, canning 10 of its first 13 shots, including four three-pointers to salt the game away.
“Our guys battled in the first half,” Johnson said. “In the second half we didn’t play with the same focus on the game plan. When their guys smelled blood in the water they didn’t hold back.
“I was especially disappointed on the defensive side of the ball. I thought that’s one area where we could hang our hat and we just didn’t get it done.”
Wilson finished with 25 points and Freetly netted 16 to pace the Farmington offense. Mendes added 11 but had a tough night at the foul line, missing all eight of his attempts.
Kole Hinrichsen scored six points and Adam Weed chimed in with five. Jameson Shrum has three points and a team-high five assists off the bench. Freetly was the top Tiger rebounder with six.
The stat sheet showed the Panthers’ dominance. North outrebounded by an almost two-to-one margin (40-21) and scored 48 points in the paint. The Panthers were ablaze from outside, sinking 13 of 16 three-point tries.
The Tigers hurts themselves in the turnover department with 16 and shot just 53 percent from the free throw line (13 of 25)
It’s out of the fire into the frying pan for Farmington (6-5) who hosts No. 5-rated Apple Valley (7-2) Friday night back at Tiger Gym.
“No feeling sorry for ourselves,” Johnson said, “because we have a team coming in that just beat North, so we have to regroup and bring our best effort.”