Alex Poggas finished with a team high 10 points in Thursday's semifinal against Chamois.
Hermann, Mo. – Chamois erased New Haven’s 11-point halftime led, advancing into Saturday’s title game in the Hermann Boy’s Tournament, 37-34. Saturday will be just the third time Chamois has played for the championship after winning the tournament for the first time in 2005 by defeating the Shamrocks.
After suffering an overtime loss last week, 31-24 to Chamois, New Haven looked to redeem themselves in Thursday’s semifinals.
In Thursday’s semifinal New Haven busted out to an 11 point lead, 23-12, while holding Chamois to 12 first half points. The Shamrock defense held the Pirate’s two deadly shooters, Clay Nolte and Eli Strobel to a combined six points after Strobel lit up Hermann for 36 points.
Offensively, it was a team effort for New Haven and maybe one of the best first halves the Shamrocks have played. Seth Schenck scored five points, Ben Luecke four, Alex Poggas five, and Kyle Ruediger topped off the balanced scoring attack with four points.
Coach Ray Steinhoff said, “Chamois would basically not guard either Ben [Luecke] or Alex [Poggas] and just clog up the lane. The other guys did a great job of hitting the open man and Alex hit a few shoots and we were able to find Ben open under the basket.”
Turnovers and tougher time getting through screens was the difference in the second half. “Once they hit a few shoots and generated a little momentum and us not responding…a few things go their way and suddenly it’s a different ballgame.”
If New Haven could only catch a break.
“Credit to Chamois on hitting shots in the second half.” Steinhoff has emphasized all year there has never been a lack of effort on their part, which was no different Thursday night.
New Haven has made mistakes in games but so have their opponents, however New Haven has also not had the best of luck. No discredit to other teams by any means, it has seemed in most games the ball has bounced in the opposite direction.
New Haven will face Montgomery County in the third place game Saturday night. This will be the third time the two will have met. New Haven took down Mont. Co in their tournament to begin the season, then they knocked off New Haven two weeks later, which was also the start of the Shamrock’s streak of bad luck and Ruediger’s rash of injuries.
Game time is set for 6 p.m. at Hermann High School with the championship ‘David verse Goliath’ battle between the powerhouse St. James Bulldogs and Chamois Pirates set for 7:30 p.m.