SPASH Boys Team Blows Out Sussex Hamilton
By Ken McKenzie
For those basketball fans who hustled out to the Quandt Fieldhouse early Sunday evening expecting a close ball game in the Sunday finale between the SPASH boys and Sussex Hamilton; it was a showdown clash that really never happened but nobody will ask for their money back in this 43rd edition of the Sentry Classic.
SPASH fans were treated to another amazing dominant performance by the Panthers as they buried Sussex Hamilton 59-21.
After jumping out to a 17-4 first quarter lead, the Panthers stretched the advantage to 33-10 at the half and continued domination throughout the third quarter to post a 50-15 advantage over a team that was rated #10 in the state as recent as two weeks ago but has now dropped three in a row.
The SPASH inside game got a hoop out of Andrew Ruzak to open the game and then became the Sam Hauser show for most of the rest of the quarter as the 6’6” junior hit twin free throws and then hit two long three-point jumpers as the lead became 10-4. Just inserted into the game, sub Jake Hofmeister wasted no time as he drained a rainbow three from the right side with Trev Anderson executing the pretty assist as he fueled a breakaway dunk by freshman Joey Hauser for a 15-4 advantage with just under two minutes remaining in the opening quarter.
Sam Hauser added another pair of free throws with a minute to play and the Panthers took their 17-6 advantage into the first scheduled break. Hauser was to add a deuce from the left side early in quarter two; then struck for another tres at 6:43 with younger brother, Joey Hauser, gaining a tip-in at 5:51 when one of the few shots missed by Sam rolled off.
The SPASH defense yielded a rare basket that made it 24-8 but Sam Hauser answered with another pair of free throws which were then followed by twin hoops by Joey Hauser, one with a successful ‘and one’ after he was fouled to stretch the margin to 21 at 31-10. Trev Anderson then ended the half with a drive to the right side of the lane to a 33-10 cushion.
Sam Hauser answered with a jumper after Sussex Hamilton had opened the second half scoring, then nailed yet another trey with brother, Joey Hauser also adding a score off a 3 X 1 transitional break. A similar play followed inside the three minute mark with Joey Hauser finishing off a pair of free throws to run the margin to 42-12.
Sam Hauser then snared a rebound and tossed end to end to catch Trev Anderson on the breakaway lay in; Hauser then added rebound baskets twice in a row in the final two minutes of the third with Trev Anderson adding a leaner off a drive down the right side of the lane to end the third frame at 50-15.
Joey Hauser kissed a soft jumper off the glass to open the fourth and Evan Mallek hit Sam Hauser on the break out at 5:49 with both benches substituting five subs at the 5:26 mark. T.J. Schrank got a hoop and Jamison Kryshak added twin free throws to force the 40 point running clock in the final minutes before Sussex Hamilton added a couple of hoops and Keith Hoffman split a pair of free tosses just before time expired.
Sam Hauser led the scoring effort on this night with 26 points and was joined in double figures by his brother Joey Hauser who had 15.
SPASH plays in the Monday night Sentry Classic finale against Fond du Lac of the Fox Valley Association who comes to Stevens Point with a 2-5 season mark, including a 61-37 loss to Wisconsin Rapids earlier in Sunday’s Sentry Classic action. They then travel to face Oshkosh North at the WBY Shootout being held at Concordia University in Mequon Wednesday afternoon at 1:30 p.m.
When Coach Scott Anderson was asked by Scott Krueger in his post-game interview about when the Panthers were truly going to be tested, Scott hedged any guesses by noting he always is looking for a “quality of play” no matter what the score or how much time is on the clock.