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WELCOME TO THE PLAYGROUND

Olson, Lynx keep scoreboard busy in road win

WCHS junior guard Tyler Olson (20) scores on a reverse layup early in the first quarter against South Central Calhoun in Rockwell City on Tuesday. It was the first of his 15 field goals, as he scored a career-high 33 points to lead the Lynx to a 78-73 road victory. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

ROCKWELL CITY — What the season will look like by the time February rolls around is anyone’s guess. But here’s what is known about the Webster City boys’ basketball team — the winter months won’t be boring.

Grab your popcorn and pop — if you’re health conscious, go for the bottled water — before tip-off, folks. And then sit back and enjoy the ride.

The high-octane, playground style that this group of Lynx thrive on made another appearance on Tuesday in a 78-73 victory over South Central Calhoun.

Tyler Olson exploded for a career-high 33 points, Carter Neuroth exploited the Titans for all 16 of his points in the second half, and WCHS (2-0) scorched the scoreboard for 31 third-quarter points in a triumph that wasn’t in the bag until the final minute.

There were plenty of highs. A lot of lows too, something head coach Marty McKinney acknowledges he’s simply going to have to get used to.

WCHS guard Drake Doering (10) hits a 3-pointer over South Central Calhoun’s Brennan Holder (32) with 45 seconds remaining to put the Lynx in front for good in their 78-73 win on Tuesday. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

“We play on the edge sometimes and there are probably going to be some times when we fall over the edge, but it also drives us,” he said. “So it’s going to be a balance we’ve got to find.”

Undersized and inexperienced in the paint, the Lynx know playing fast, scoring in transition and relying on their speed and athleticism are the keys to success.

And it’s fun too.

“It’s Fuller (Hall) ball,” Olson said with a chuckle. “It’s a perfect fit for us.”

Olson canned 15 of 21 shots and scored eight of his points early in the first quarter. He went into the intermission with 18 points, and put up 15 more after the break.

Carter Neuroth (22) scores two of his 16 second-half points at the rim against South Central Calhoun in Rockwell City on Tuesday. DFJ photo/Troy Banning

Olson also collected seven rebounds, six steals and six assists — a well-rounded, eye-opening performance that had McKinney excited about his junior guard’s future.

“Tyler is just so athletic and he does so many things well,” McKinney said. “He’s a kid that likes to compete and what I really like about Tyler is he keeps things light. The kid is never too far up, never too far down, and he’s preparing more this year.”

Tavis Eklund cashed in on four 3-pointers en route to 14 points and Drake Doering buried three more triples and notched 13 points.

It’s the second time in as many games this season that WCHS had four players score in double figures.

Doering came through in the clutch. With the game deadlocked at 73, the senior rained in a 3 from the wing with 45 seconds left to give WCHS a 76-73 lead. And with 20 seconds to go, he deflected a long out of bounds pass towards the backcourt by SCC; Olson was there to scoop it up and race the other way for a game-clinching layup.

DFJ photo/Troy Banning

WCHS shot 55 percent overall (33 of 60) and 45 percent (9 of 20) from behind the arc. The Lynx also had 22 assists, including six from Neuroth.

“These guys share the ball really well and if you play this style you’ve got to have guys willing to pass it,” McKinney said.

There were plenty of roller coaster moments. WCHS opened the game on an 8-0 flurry, but squandered the lead by the end of the first quarter. SCC (3-2) led at the half, 34-32, as the Lynx got sloppy with the ball in the second period and went into the break with 11 turnovers.

The nets sizzled in the third quarter, however. Eklund caught fire with three 3s and Neuroth knocked down two more — part of a 16-2 opening burst for the Lynx. They led by as many as 14 points, 60-46, after back-to-back Eklund 3s.

SCC whittled away though and eventually clawed back to even, 73-all, on an offensive rebound and bucket by Homer Martz with 2:10 left in regulation.

DFJ photo/Troy Banning

Martz led the Titans with 19 points. Cole Corey (13 points), Brennan Holder (12), Landon Schleisman (11) and Josh Dietrich (10) all scored in double figures as well for SCC.

“We’ve got to find an identity defensively because we’re not going to rely on scoring 70 points a night,” McKinney said.

WCHS will open up North Central Conference play against St. Edmond on Friday. The longtime rivals will meet inside Jeff Gym at 7:45 p.m. — the first boys’ varsity game in the historic venue in nearly seven years.

Webster City 78, SCC 73

Tuesday at Rockwell City

Webster City (2-0) — Ty McKinney 0 0-0 0, Drake Doering 5 0-0 13, Tavis Eklund 5 0-0 14, Tyler Olson 15 3-6 33, Carter Neuroth 7 0-0 16, Lincoln LaSourd 0 0-0 0, Will Tasler 1 0-0 2, Nick Hackbarth 0 0-0 0. Totals: 33 3-6 78.

South Central Calhoun (3-2) — Landon Schleisman 5 1-3 11, Joe Clark 0 0-0 0, Cole Corey 5 1-2 13, Josh Dietrich 4 2-2 10, Chase Scheidegger 0 0-0 0, Jacob Schultz 4 0-2 8, Homer Martz 5 7-7 19, Blake Thompson 0 0-0 0, Brennan Holder 4 2-4 12. Totals: 27 13-20 73.

Web City 17 15 31 15 — 78

SCC 15 19 19 20 — 73

3-point field goals — WC 9 (Eklund 4, Doering 3, Neuroth 2); SCC 6 (Corey 2, Martz 2, Holden 2). Rebounds — WC 29 (Olson 7, Eklund 4, Hackbarth 4, Tasler 4). Steals — WC 12 (Olson 6). Assists — WC 22 (Olson 6, Neuroth 6, Hackbarth 4). Turnovers — WC 17. Team fouls — WC 20, SCC 13. Fouled out — SCC: Corey.

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