March 21, 2019 09:00 PM
(ABC 6 News) – The Spring Grove Lions weren’t afraid of the Class A boys’ basketball heavyweights—and they proved that on Thursday.
In their Class A state tournament opener, the Lions upset the top-seeded Springfield Tigers, 78-67. Spring Grove is in their first state boys basketball tournament in program history, beating a Tigers’ team in their state tournament debut which had lost only two games during the regular season.
"I know it's an upset on paper, everybody says a number one versus a number eight, and I don't want to sound disrespectful, they're a great team, but before the game started, we have played this team twice in the last two years," Spring Grove head coach Wade Grinde said. "Once, they got us pretty good, this summer they beat us in overtime, and our guys were definitely focused and ready for the third time to be a charm."
The Lions were led in scoring by a trio of seniors, Noah Elton (25 points), Alex Folz (21 points), and Ethan Matzke (19 points). Spring Grove also shot at a high level from offensive perimeter, connecting on 13 of 20 three point field goal attempts.
Springfield was led in scoring by senior Isaac Fink (30 points), who was a Minnesota Mr. Basketball Semifinalist this season.
"It was a great, great team win," Matzke said. "Everybody is scoring points, everybody is working their tail off, crowd is getting into it, it's a great feeling."
With the win, the Lions will play fourth-seeded Henning in the Class A semifinals. The Lions and Hornets are scheduled to tipoff from the Target Center at noon on Friday.
Updated: March 21, 2019 09:00 PM
Created: March 21, 2019 03:28 PM
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