(Photos by Zach Jevne) [Order this photo]
The first half was shaping up to be another exciting, high-scoring Lakes Conference tilt between Spencer and Le Mars Friday night at the Field House in Spencer.
Unfortunately for Tiger fans, it was only the first half as Le Mars clamped down in the second half to halt Spencer's offensive attack to a stop in a 62-49 win. Despite leading 32-26 at the halftime break, Spencer only mustered 17 second-half points and gave up a back-breaking 21-0 run that stretched for nearly 10 minutes of game time in the third and fourth quarters.
"I thought they cranked it up and we couldn't match their intensity in the second half," Spencer coach Kory Petzenhauser said. "We had some guys let one play affect a string of plays instead of letting it go, and we can't do that to be successful. When we start to go a few possessions without getting good looks, that's when we have to buckle down and run through our offense without getting too panicked. They set the tone and had us back on our heels."
Spencer got 15 points from Matt Finnern to lead the Tigers, while Blake Altenhofen and Michael Gabhart each added 11. Leading scorer Matthew Klemme was limited to just six points in the game, which included some foul trouble for the senior forward. Klemme had 30 points in the 86-80 loss at Le Mars in double overtime on Dec. 14.
Jake Irwin led Le Mars with 16 points, Tyler Borchers scored 14 and Kyle Dolph added 12. The Bulldogs improved to 11-4 and 9-2 in the Lakes. Spencer falls to 11-5 and 8-3 in conference play.
The Tigers will travel to Storm Lake on Tuesday to face the Tornadoes.
BOYS SCORING SUMMARY
SPENCER: Matt Finnern 15, Michael Gabhart 11, Blake Altenhofen 11, Matthew Klemme 6, Tanner Morris 6.
LE MARS: Jake Irwin 16, Tyler Borchers 14, Kyle Dolph 12, Parker Rolfes 8, Gabe Rahn 5, Brendan Collins 5, Colan Borchers 2.