Tigers end losing streak

Published 11:58pm Tuesday, December 4, 2012

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Jorge Sena led the Tigers to a 65-60 victory over New Prague Tuesday night, giving them a (1-0) record on the year. According to Tigers’ coach, Lucas Kreuscher, New Prague has ended Albert Lea’s season seven straight years.

“It’s been a while since we beat New Prague,” Kreuscher said.

Sena scored a team-high 18 points along with four rebounds in the game.

“Jorge made some plays, he’s a fireplug,” Kreuscher said. “He’s going to make plays. The thing about him is that he gets the ball to the guys so they can score.”

The Tigers got on the board first with a 3-pointer from junior guard Tyler Vandenheuvel. Vandenheuvel went on to make a total of four 3-pointers in the game and ended the game with 16 points and six rebounds.

The Tigers grabbed a 9-2 lead early before the Trojans tied it back up at 11-11. Vandenheuvel scored a couple more 3-pointers in a 13-3 run to give the Tigers the lead for good.

Sena made a 3-pointer as the first half buzzer sounded, giving the crowd and team a little energy going into the second half.

The second half was a nail-biter for Albert Lea and the crowd. At one point, the Tigers were up 50-35 and looking like they were going to cruise to an easy win. The Trojans didn’t give up and fought their way back into the game making it 58-56 with less than two minutes to play in the game.

“They kept their composure,” Kreuscher said. “We were up 15 points at the highest, they came roaring back and we kept our cool. We made enough plays on defense, made a couple of plays on offense.”

The final moments of the game had the Trojans playing the quick foul strategy. The final nine points of the game for the Tigers were all free throws. Even though the Tigers only shot 44 percent from the line, they pulled off a five-point victory over a tough opponent.

“I thought our guys were extremely tough.” Kreuscher said. “They played extremely physical. The effort was tremendous, and it’s like that every day in practice. Everybody that played contributed in some way on either offense or defense.”

The Tigers dominated the boards with 41 rebounds on the night, led by Miles Erdman and Cody Scherff, each with nine.

“We really got rebounds when we needed them. What a team win,” Kreuscher said. “Everybody worked their tail off and they should be proud.”

The Tigers play in Red Wing on Thursday.