Dirty work: Stern’s paint presence powers Cardinals to win over LP

Published 10:38 pm Friday, January 5, 2024

LEROY – LeRoy-Ostrander junior Ryder Stern rarely even looked at the rim when he had the ball on Friday, but he still was a giant factor for the Cardinals boys basketball team as they beat Lyle-Pacelli 71-58.

Stern, who scored just two points, ripped down 13 rebounds and he gave LO plenty of second chance points as they led for most of the night.

“You’ve got to be physical down there when you’re not very tall,” Stern said. “I’ve got to box everybody out and do the dirty work. I don’t really care about scoring. I know everybody else can score.”

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Stern’s hustle set up the scoring for LO junior Camden Hungerholt, who posted 27 points, six rebounds, three assists and five steals and freshman Reid Hungerholt, who scored 24 points. Camden was appreciative of the effort of both of his teammates.

“We like Ryder getting all of those hard boards. It’s crazy what he does down there,” Camden said. “(Reid) pushes it pretty well on offense and he’s good to have as a teammate. He takes a lot of weight off my shoulders as a scorer.”

The Cardinals opened the game on a 16-4 run, but LP (5-6 overall) eventually grabbed a 28-25 lead after Marshall Burma hit a three with 2:19 left in the first half. LO (5-6 overall) closed the half on a 9-0 run as Reid hit a big fade-away that turned into a three-point play during the run.

LP got back within 40-38 in the second half, but Reid and Tristan Lewison hit back-to-back threes to trigger a 17-0 Cardinal run that put the game away.

LP head coach Carl Truckenmiller said his team needs to stay ready for the best effort from their opponents.

“These teams haven’t beaten us for many years and they know now that there is blood in the water and they can get one from us,” Truckenmiller said. “We need to be ready to play every day.”

LO head coach Ryan Evans likes how his team is coming together and he’s definitely taken note of the play of Reid and Stern.

“Ryder is so huge for us. He provides all of that effort, energy and rebounding and when he gets that shot or two to go when he actually shoots the ball, the kids go nuts for it,” Evans said. “Reid has grown a ton and I’m so proud of his growth already. I told him at the beginning of the year, he can’t be option two, he’s got to be option 1A and that’s what he’s grown into.” 

Dylan Christianson finished with 14 points and 10 rebounds for LP and Chase Bauer added seven points, eight rebounds and four assists.

LP 28  30  –  58

LO 34  37  –  71

LO scoring: Camden Hungerholt, 27; Reid Hungerholt, 24; Carter Sweeney, 8; Talan Lewison, 7; Spencer Goodale, 2; Ryder Stern, 2

LP scoring: Dylan Christianson, 14; Marshall Burma, 11; Isaac Nelsen, 9; Chase Bauer, 7; Leland Hicks, 6; Andrew Frederick, 6; Young Achuoth, 5