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Wranglers beat up on Rebels, 40-14

Feb 12, 2017 By Scott Akanewich, Sports Editor

Zach Pickinpaugh led Shoshoni with 17 points in a dominant home victory against Riverside.

J.J. Pingetzer came flying across the low post defending his man with the kind of ferocity felt by the all-state football performer's opponents on the gridiron early in Shoshoni's home basketball game Friday against Riverside, clattering against a Rebels player while attempting to break up a pass as though it was over the middle on the goal line, as opposed to along the baseline under the basket.

Pingetzer's physicality set the tone for a scoreline more suited to a 100-yard grass playing surface than a shiny hardwood floor, ending in a 40-14 victory for the Wranglers.

Zach Pickinpaugh led Shoshoni with 17 points, including the contest's opening bucket, on his way to five in the first quarter, after which the Wranglers led, 11-6.

Riverside's lack of depth and varsity experience was exploited by the Wranglers all game long, as Gary Medicine Cloud poured in nine points in the second stanza, providing the home side with a 28-8 lead at the break.

According to Shoshoni head coach Brady Slack, the contest unfolded exactly as he had envisioned.

"We tried to get out to an early lead and give some of our young guys some playing time," said Slack. "But, it's difficult because you don't want to overlook any team."

However, with a road showdown against Greybull looming large the following afternoon, the SHS boss was able to rotate his bench in and out of the game the entire second half.

Seldom-used players as Dylan Konija, Justin Lajeunesse, Mason Lucas, Mikael Bessler, Simon Lutz and Lucas Juan-Pedro all saw playing time as the clock wound down on the proceedings.

Slack was happy with the effort of his reserves.

"All of then did a good job," said Slack. "They were chomping at the bit to get going, but they stayed disciplined."

Only 18 total points were scored in the entire second half, as the home side used the opportunity to experiment, said Slack.

"We were working on holding the ball for 30 seconds," he said, "some things which might help us down the road."

Greybull 37, Shoshoni 34

On Saturday, the Wranglers headed north for a meeting against Greybull and came away with a hard-fought 37-34 defeat at the hands of the Buffs.

Shoshoni led 21-17 at the half on the strength of 15 points from Medicine Cloud, who was working off his teammates to perfection, said Slack.

"They couldn't stop Gary," he said. "They were trying to faceguard him, but he did a great job of reading screens and had as good a game as I've seen him have."

According to Slack, the difference in the game was a play right at the end of the third quarter when the Buffs' Dante Sylvester was fouled on a 3-point attempt and made all three free throws, prompting the home side to allow down the proceedings precipitously, leading 31-28.

"They stalled the game," said Slack. "We tried half-court trapping, but they handle the ball very well."

The result was a low-scoring, plodding fourth quarter which saw only 12 points combined by both clubs.

"We were only down by as much as five points, but it seemed more like 30," said Slack. "I always say if we hold a team to under 40, we have a chance. And we did."

Shoshoni (12-9, 3-3 Class 2-A Northwest) will travel to Lovell on Friday before hosting Rocky Mountain in a showdown Saturday to close the regular season before regionals in Riverton the following week.

Riverside 6 2 2 4 -- 14

Shoshoni 11 17 6 6 -- 40

Riverside - Clark 6, Gesch 4, Miller 4.

Shoshoni - Konija 0, Sanderson 2, Cornell 1, Pickinpaugh 17, Thoren 6, Pingetzer 0, Lajeunesse 0, Lucas 0, Bessler 0, Juan-Pedro 0, Lutz 0, Medicine Cloud 14.

Shoshoni 10 11 7 6 -- 34

Greybull 8 9 14 6 -- 37

Shoshoni - Sanderson 3, Cornell 2, Pickinpaugh 6, Thoren 2, Pingetzer 1, Medicine Cloud 20.

Greybull - Fox 10, Sylvester 5, Stoffers 4, Forcella 2, Howe 2, Dooley 8, Ewen 6.

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