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Wauwatosa West boys basketball team makes strides but drops its first two games

Trojans look to end losing streaks this week

Dec. 4, 2012

While showing great improvement in its second game, the Wauwatosa West boys basketball team opened the Woodland-West Division season by dropping games to New Berlin Eisenhower and Pewaukee.

Tosa West lost a 76-52 decision Nov. 27 at first-place New Berlin Eisenhower to open the Woodland Conference season.

The Lions used a 23-12 first quarter and a 22-14 second period to take a 45-26 lead at intermission. The Trojans played a closer second half, as they were outscored, 31-26, losing the final two quarters, 14-11, and 17-15.

Ricky Landers and Austin Jones led the Trojans with 10 and eight points, respectively. Steffan Brown and Blake Harvey had seven points each and Andre Carroll and Leon Moore added six apiece.

West off target

Leading the way for Eisenhower was Reed Timmer and Sandro Pesqueira with 20 and 17 points, respectively, each hitting three 3-pointers to account for six of the nine the Lions had. Tosa West shot 70 percent from the free throw line, going 14-of-20.

"We turned it over too much," said Trojans coach Chad Stelse about his team's 26 turnovers. "You're not going to beat too many teams with 20-plus turnovers, especially against a team as solid as Eisenhower."

Tosa West shot only 34 percent from the field, while the Lions shot 60 percent.

"They did a great job of being patient offensively until they got a great shot," Stelse said. "Defensively, I liked our effort for 90 percent of each possession, but our guys need to focus on finishing every defensive possession. Offensively, we need to limit our turnovers and improve our shot selection."

Trojans make strides

The Trojans then went out and played well for three quarters against Pewaukee on Friday, but fell, 73-64, in their home opener.

Tosa West played the Pirates even in the second quarter (15-15) after a close first period (12-8) and only trailed, 27-23, at intermission. They then came out after intermission and went on a 26-19 tear, to lead 49-46 going into the final period.

But the Pirates went on a 27-15 tear in the fourth quarter and the Trojans suffered another defeat.

"I loved our defensive effort for the first three quarters," Stelse said. "In the fourth quarter, we doubled off shooters that we weren't supposed to leave and they made us pay for it.

"They also took advantage once we put them in the bonus. They made the big shots when they needed to."

Pewaukee finished 20-of-24 at the free throw line.

Coach optimistic

"I like how our guys responded to being down early," Stelse said. "And if we can continue to come out of the half like we did against Pewaukee, I like our chances moving forward."

Tosa West had four players in double figures as Harvey had 13 points, Jones had 12 and Carroll and Landers had 11 each.

The Trojans have now dropped 18 straight games overall and are on a 15 straight conference slide. They face South Milwaukee on Tuesday and play St. Francis Friday on the road. West returns home Dec. 11 to face Greenfield.

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