Top-ranked Tigers coast past Panthers

RIPON – The Ripon Tigers, ranked No. 1 in the Associated Press Division 3 boys basketball poll, cruised past Plymouth, 71-48, in an East Central Conference boys basketball game here Tuesday night.

Ripon upped its ECC-leading record to 8-0 (15-0 overall). The Panthers dropped to 3-5 in the league (7-8 overall).

The Tigers were led by the onetwo scoring combination of senior forwards Eddie Muench and Bennett Vander Plas who hit 23 and 21 points, respectively. Ripon built a 46-25 halftime lead, sparked by 17 points from Vander Plas and 14 by Muench.

“Ripon is a very talented team and is not only the top team in Division 3 but also one of a small handful of elite teams in the state,” said Panther head coach Tim Schultz.

“In the first half they shot the ball extremely well, connecting on all five of their threes in the half, which really put us on our heels.”


ALEX SHUTTER, Plymouth guard, drives on Ripon’s Melvin Lee in Tuesday’s ECC basketball game. – Photo by Jason Hassel ALEX SHUTTER, Plymouth guard, drives on Ripon’s Melvin Lee in Tuesday’s ECC basketball game. – Photo by Jason Hassel Vander Plas and Muench buried two treys each in the opening half.

Senior guard Alex Shutter paced PHS in scoring with 14 and steals, two. Matt Richards had a team-high five rebounds. Richards and Adam Smith led in assists with three each.

“I felt we competed well from start to finish but missed too many shots to help keep us in the game. Shooting 34 percent from the floor against any team, especially one as good as Ripon, provides little margin for error in all other areas,” said Schultz.

“Alex Shutter and Adam Smith played aggressively on both ends of the floor. Matt Richards rebounded well. Derek Schweiger played a solid all-around game.”

JUNIOR VARSITY GAMES

In JV 1 action, the Panthers fell, 51-45. PHS is 5-3 in the ECC (11-4 overall).

Max Hassel led PHS in scoring with 14 points and Aiden Reilly hit 10. Nick Falls grabbed a team-high 10 rebounds.

The Panthers’ JV 2 squad improved to 6-2 in the ECC (13-2 overall) with a 49-40 win. Ben Olsen led PHS in scoring with 17 and Joel Williams netted 14.

Williams had a team-high 12 boards and Ethan Eigenberger led in steals with four.


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