MARSHFIELD – The Marshfield boys basketball team seemed to be well on its way to snapping its mini two-game losing streak, but suddenly Eau Claire Memorial made a game of it.
The Tigers led by eight at halftime and pushed their advantage to as much as 17 early in the second half, before Memorial stormed back to take a brief lead. Marshfield responded by scoring the game’s final eight points and hung on for a 63-58 nonconference victory Saturday afternoon at Marshfield High School.
Marshfield improves to 14-6 after beating Memorial (11-7) for the second time this season. The Tigers also won in the championship game at the Waunakee Invitational over Memorial in December.
Marshfield, which scored a season-low 39 points in a loss at Chippewa Falls on Friday night, had to turn around quickly for an afternoon tilt on Saturday and regained its offensive moxie.
The Tigers pulled out to a 35-27 by halftime and led 50-33 before Memorial put on a full-court trap that caused problems for Marshfield.
Memorial forced a number of turnovers, took advantage of some missed free throws by the Tigers, and suddenly couldn’t miss a shot.
Connor Stoik’s 3-pointer with a little more than 2 minutes left put the Old Abes up 58-55, completing a 25-5 run. However, that would be the last time Memorial scored.
Brant Bohman responded with a 3-pointer to tie the game, Addison Hill made one of two free throws, and Anthony Posteluk hit two free throws to put Marshfield back up by three.
Memorial wound down 15 seconds before calling a timeout with 5.8 seconds to go. After the timeout, Caden Boser, who scored a game-high 23 points, was fouled shooting a 3-pointer with 3 seconds left. Boser missed all three free throws, the final on purpose, but it did not hit the rim and gave possession to the Tigers.
Isaac Meverden was immediately fouled and made both free throws to ice the victory for Marshfield.
Bohman and Preston Wagner each scored 14 points, and Meverden and Posteluk both had nine for the Tigers.
Marshfield will play for the Wisconsin Valley Conference championship at 7:15 p.m. Thursday at home against Stevens Point. Marshfield sits on top of the conference standings with a 9-2 record, while Stevens Point and Merrill are tied at 8-2. Point plays at Merrill on Tuesday.
Marshfield has won just two WVC titles in history, those coming when it tied Wausau West for the top spot in both 1992 and 2010.
Brackets for the upcoming WIAA playoffs will be announced on Sunday.
Tigers 63, Old Abes 58
Eau Claire Memorial 27 31 – 58
Marshfield 35 28 – 63
EAU CLAIRE MEMORIAL (58): Altherrelle Robbins 1 3-7 5, Landon VanGrunsven 0 0-0 0, Connor Stoik 3 2-2 11, Ethan Van Grunsven 2 1-1 5, Tanner Linduski 2 2-2 6, Simon Larson 3 0-0 8, Caden Boser 7 7-11 23, Duncan McKinley 0 0-0 0. FG: 18. FT: 15-23. 3-pointers: 7 (Stoik 3, Larson 2, Boser 2). Fouls: 18. Technical foul: Boser. Fouled out: E. Van Grunsven. Record: 11-7.
MARSHFIELD (63): Isaac Meverden 2-4 4-4 9, Brant Bohman 6-10 0-1 14, Tommy Olson 2-2 2-2 6, Cody Korth 1-1 0-1 3, Anthony Posteluk 3-6 2-2 9, Preston Wagner 4-11 6-7 14, Sam Hinson 0-0 0-0 0, Joey Goettl 0-1 2-2 2, Addison Hill 2-5 1-3 6. FG: 20-40. FT: 17-22. 3-pointers: 6-17 (Bohman 2-5, Meverden 1-1, Korth 1-1, Posteluk 1-3, Hill 1-3, Goettl 0-1, Wagner 0-3). Rebounds: 22 (Wagner 6). Fouls: 18. Fouled out: none. Record: 14-6.