Gael boys knock off Indians

Adolph Kochendorfer and Brian Heide left their non-conference game Thursday night on opposite ends of the spectrum.

Kochendorfer’s St. Edmond boys snapped a four-game losing skid by posting a 56-44 victory inside the Gael gym.

Matthew Bocken scored 20 points, while Konrad Laufersweiler added 15 and grabbed 12 rebounds for St. Edmond (13-6 overall), which was staring in the face of its first five-game losing streak since the start of the 2001-02 season.

For the Indians (7-10), Tanner Youngberg scored 16 and Aaron Aljets added 12.

The Gaels broke open a close game with a 30-6 run that started in the second quarter and stretched into the fourth. During that span, Bocken scored 16 of his points.

“We needed this one,” said Kochendorfer, who won his 460th career game and improved to 342-124 at SEHS. “When you start to lose a few games in a row, it can really become tough to dig yourself out.

“(Earlier this week vs. Webster City) we just couldn’t get shots to fall. They were good looks, they just didn’t go in. Our kids didn’t hang their heads, and they came out and played a good game.”

Kochendorfer hopes the victory can get the Gaels back on track heading towards the postseason. Last year, St. Edmond dropped five of its last seven – including a 46-42 loss to Pocahontas Area.

“We’ve been playing a lot of schools bigger than us (in terms of enrollment),” Kochendorfer said. “Our kids gained a lot of confidence in what they can do, especially Matthew.

“We know he can shoot the ball, but he made an adjustment in his game. Instead of getting too far inside (the paint), he jump-stopped and made several big baskets.”

Bocken sank a pair of three-pointers to force the Indians to play more off Robby Burke and Laufersweiler down low. Burke, the leading scorer and rebounder for St. Edmond, was held to just eight and three.

“Robby had a lot of good looks, they just didn’t go for him,” Kochendorfer said. “Give credit to the Indians because they were aggressive in their defense against him. Konrad stepped up and had the kind of game we need out of him going forward.”

Robert Flattery contributed 11 points off the bench, including six in the first quarter as St. Edmond staked itself to an early 12-7 advantage.

Heide, who guided Pomeroy-Palmer to back-to-back state titles in 2001 and ’02, hopes his young squad can learn from this game. The Indians had won three in a row.

“I know everybody talks about how we have a young team, but at this point in the season, you aren’t really inexperienced anymore,” said Heide, who is 155-75 in 10 years. “We’ve got to figure things out here real quick or we’ll have a short run (in the postseason).

“Our kids kind of pushed the button there (when St. Edmond went on its run) and we didn’t respond well, including myself. That’s got to change.”

The Indians play at Prairie Valley tonight and have two make-up games scheduled for Monday and Tuesday of next week. They defeated the Warriors earlier this year, 73-55.

St. Edmond will also return to action this evening, taking on Iowa Falls-Alden on the road.