The boys varsity basketball team enters its biggest game of the season with revenge on the mind. The last time the Rangers played Forest Hills Northern, FHC gave the Huskies all they could handle but lost 73-65. The Rangers stand at 11-5 on the season and 6-3 in the OK White. Although the Rangers are mathematically eliminated from winning the conference title, there is still a lot to play for, as they will try to spoil FHN’s 18-0 season.
The last time these two met, the Rangers threw something at the Huskies that they had not seen all season long. To try to offset the incredible shooting ability of Husky guards senior Trent Summerfield and sophomore Ethan Erickson, head coach Kyle Carhart had junior Mitch Wilkinson and senior Josh Wise face guard them the entire game. Although it proved effective, as Ethan Erickson and Trent Summerfield both were somewhat held in check, it was the Huskies’ role players who really stepped up. Senior guards Brandon Matthews and Drew Moore, along with sophomore guard Trinidad Chambliss, made big-time plays for the Huskies down the stretch to seal the win. If the Rangers want any shot at winning, it will need to be a full team defensive effort.
FHC big man Dan Deindorfer had a very successful game against the Huskies in the first matchup. Dan scored 19 points while only taking 10 shots, grabbed 6 rebounds, and blocked 2 shots. Although the Huskies have one of the most if not the most talented backcourts in the area, the Rangers with Dan have the edge in the frontcourt.
Free throw shooting was the Achilles heel for the Rangers in the first matchup. For a team that is collectively shooting nearly 80% from the line on the season, the first game against FHN is certainly forgettable. The Rangers made just 14 of their 26 attempted free throws, coming out to just under 54%. Had the Rangers made more free throws, it would have been a much different game, one that the Rangers very well could have won.
The Rangers also had a very rough night from beyond the arc in the first game. They made just 3 of their 23 attempted three-pointers, just 13%. This has been a theme for the Rangers this season, as when they have shot 37% or better from beyond the three-point line the Rangers are 7-1. When they shoot below that, they are just 4-4. If the Rangers can make 9 or more three-pointers, they will have a chance to win.