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Mount Horeb’s slick passing powers victory against Waunakee in Badger North boys basketball game

December 22, 2018

WAUNAKEE — The Mount Horeb boys basketball team was in a sharing mood Friday night, collecting 18 assists on 28 field goals in a 74-55 victory over Waunakee in a Badger North Conference game.

“We’ve all learned that we can all work off of each other and really play together,” Mount Horeb senior point guard Dusty Zenz said. “And that helps us all get open.”

Every Mount Horeb starter scored at least seven points, six players had at least one assist and Jason Larson scored a game-high 22 points.

Senior Bryce Farnsworth led the Vikings with five assists, including two during a 14-2 Mount Horeb run to start the second half. First, he fed junior Owen Ziegler for a 3-pointer. Then, following a Waunakee turnover, he hit a streaking Larson on the break for a layup to cap the scoring burst.

Zenz, who had four assists, and Larson got Mount Horeb fans going when Zenz made a steal, then threw a long pass ahead to Larson for a breakaway dunk midway through that second-half run.

Mount Horeb (7-1, 5-0 Badger North) held Waunakee (5-2, 3-2) to just two field goals inside the 3-point line in the first half as the Vikings built a 36-24 lead.

Only five first-half 3-pointers from senior Will Knatz, who finished with 18 points, kept the Warriors in the game until halftime.

“What happened was their effort was better than ours, their mentality was better than ours, and they took advantage of every breakdown,” Waunakee coach Dana MacKenzie said.

Defending Badger North regular-season champion Waunakee didn’t return any starters, with senior Josh Cash the only returnee who averaged more than six points. Cash had six points Friday, half of his team-leading average of 12.2.

MacKenzie said how the inexperienced Warriors respond to setbacks will determine their success.

“But we’re confident that when it’s all said and done, we’re going to be a tough team to beat,” MacKenzie said.

Mount Horeb coach Todd Nesheim acknowledged there are bigger games ahead for the Vikings — ranked No. 8 in Division 2 in the wissports.net poll. But he didn’t diminish the importance of posting a 19-point victory in the defending conference champion’s gym.

“There’s no doubt about that,” Nesheim said. “That can only help our confidence, which is probably the biggest reason why it was important.”

Mount Horeb 36 38 — 74

Waunakee 24 31 — 55

MOUNT HOREB — Zenz 1 3-3 8, Farnsworth 3 0-0 7, Nortman 7 1-1 15, Larson 8 6-7 22, Rasmussen 2 0-0 6, Post 0 1-2 1, Ziegler 6 0-0 15. Totals 28 11-13 74.

WAUNAKEE — Cash 3 0-0 6, Block 1 0-0 2, Knatz 6 0-0 18, Deering 0 4-6 4, Fischer 1 4-5 7, Keller 5 3-5 14, Nelson 1 2-2 4. Totals 17 13-18 55.

3-point goals — MH 7 (Ziegler 3, Rasmussen 2, Zenz 1, Farnsworth 1), W 8 (Knatz 6, Fischer 1, Keller 1). Total fouls — MH 17, W 13.

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