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5 keys to a Concordia Lutheran win

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For more on prep basketball, follow The News-Sentinel.com crew via Twitter at PrepHoops_ns.

A track meet broke out between SAC powers

Saturday, February 2, 2013 - 2:14 am

1. Match speed with speed

There is no doubt that Northrop can run-and-gun teams until they collapse, but Concordia refused to do so on Friday. In fact, the Cadets matched it. Concordia got several easy layups in transition off of empty Northrop possessions, an aspect of the game typically seen out of the Bruins' offense. Coach Josh Eggold challenged Northrop by giving it a taste of its own medicine, and it worked.

2. Contesting shots

There is no doubt that Brenton and Bryson Scott are very good shooters, and when they get hot it can be downright impossible to slow them down. The duo combined for 41 points on Friday, but they worked for every point. The Cadets hounded the Scotts all night, making them weave their way through defenders and putting a hand in their face at all times. Even when Bryson or Brenton got open, they were never able to get shots to fall because it was as if they were hurrying some shots, knowing that they would not be open long. The two combined to shoot 14-of-40 from the field for 35 percent.

3. Making the extra pass

Concordia has been very good all year at finding the open man and making that one last pass that results in an easy look. The Cadets did that to perfection on Northrop on Friday. Ryan Gross easily could have taken several shots on the night, but instead passed into five baskets without taking a single shot of his own. Marq Rogers and D.J. McCall also found open guys for easy hoops. The Bruins had to work for every one of their 58 points, while the Cadets got about 14 of their points easily because of assists.

4. McCall steps up

With Gross on the bench, McCall moved into the point guard spot for the final key minutes of the game. The ultra-quick hands of the Northrop backcourt can be intimidating to even the most experienced guards, but McCall handled the pressure magnificently.

5. Crowd support

What a great atmosphere at Northrop on Friday. The Bruins faithful always come out in droves to support their team at home, but Concordia matched it with a sizable student section and adult fans. What resulted was a great arena for a great game between two of the best teams in the area. Felt every bit of a postseason game, with drama and crowd reaction at its peak.