Trojans cagers still struggling
Boys see their losing streak stretch to nine games with two losses
The Wauwatosa West boys basketball team lost their ninth game in a row Tuesday, dropping a 66-56 decision to Grafton in a non-conference game at Tosa West. Combined with a Woodland Conference loss Friday, the Trojans are now 5-16 overall, having not won a game since Jan. 11.
After an exciting first quarter, the Trojans trailed only 16-14, but the Blackhawks used a 19-11 second period to roll into halftime with a 35-25 lead. The Trojans battled in the second half, but they couldn't overcome that tough first half.
Tosa West played Grafton even in the second half - 31-31 - being outscored 13-11 in the third quarter and then finishing on a high note by winning a high-scoring fourth period, 20-18.
Grafton's Scotty Tyler led all scorers with 26 points, hitting 10-for-14 from the free throw line and two 3-pointers. Caleb Keshemberg was the only other Grafton player in double figures with 10.
Tosa West's Andre Carroll continues to come on as he poured in 18 points, hitting 9-for-13 from the free throw line and adding a 3-pointer.
But the Trojans did have some balance, as Reggie Cason had nine, including two 3s; Steffan Brown had eight, Austin Jones had seven and Nakeem Evans and Blake Harvey had six each. Jack Krenzien was held to two points.
The Trojans will now finish the Woodland Conference season with a game at second-place Pewaukee (12-4, 15-6) at 7:30 p.m. Feb. 14.
Tosa West has a 5-11 record, good enough for fifth in the Woodland-West, but a loss with tie them with New Berlin West (5-12).
In Friday's 73-47 loss to New Berlin Eisenhower at home, the Trojans struggled in the second and third quarter and that was pretty much the game.
The Trojans played well in the first quarter, battling the first-place Lions to within one point, 13-12. But Eisenhower doubled up the score in the second quarter (22-11) for a 35-23 halftime lead.
Tosa West was still in the game when the second half began, but a 21-8 quarter but the score 56-31 entering the final period.
"I thought our effort and intensity was outstanding," West coach Chad Stelse said. "We contested well on many of their attempts - they made a lot of tough shots throughout the game.
"They showed why they're on top of the conference. Offensively, we need to finish more around the hoop and knock down more outside shots to be successful."
Andre Carroll led the way with 12 points, Jack Krenzien had 11, Steffan Brown had nine and Nakeem Evans put in eight. Ike's Reed Timmer had 17 points as the Lions had four players in double figures.
"The guys have continued to work hard and stay positive throughout a tough stretch," Stelse said. "We had a lot of games I think that we could of won but didn't go our way in the end. Guys need to understand how important it is to do all the little things to be successful at this level.
"They have started to realize that they need to play the same way for 32 minutes to win big games against quality opponents. We were just too inconsistent throughout the season."
The Trojans are seeded 11th in the post-season and will travel to Milwaukee Samuel Morse-Marshall/Juneau (9-11) for a 7 p.m. first-round game Tuesday.
"I'm confident our guys will continue to work hard, and I know they are excited for the tournament and the challenge that lies ahead."
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