LAKEVIEW — Good basketball teams have multiple players step up when needed to help win ballgames.
On Monday night, the Lakeview Wildcats — with its leading scorer in foul trouble — had such a game, with multiple players leading the way in a 64-47 nonleague win over Chippewa Hills at Cook Gymnasium.
“The key for us, in the past, maybe one or two guys would step up and have a good game,” Lakeview coach Mike Schreiber said. “Tonight, I really thought at least five of us took charge of things and played up to what we can do together and not look for someone else to do things.”
With leading scorer Shawn Lindsey on the bench in foul trouble, two sophomores led the way offensively for the Wildcats.
John Zuluaga Torres scored a game-high 18 points, while Caleb Ruvalcaba added 14 points. A third sophomore, Nate Shurlow, knocked down nine points.
With Lakeview (3-2) leading 36-35 late in the third quarter, Ruvalcaba went on a scoring binge that carried over into the fourth quarter. He accounted for 12 points as the Wildcats increased their lead to 51-38 just seconds into the final quarter.
The closest Chippewa Hills (2-2) could get was within 11 points at 51-40.
“He is a sophomore and I saw that during the summer last year,” Schreiber said of Ruvalcaba. “Sooner or later it was going for come out for him. He stepped up and played to what he can do.”
Schreiber was happy with the play of his sophomore trio.
“This was their coming-out game,” he said. “This was the first varsity game where they could really show what they can do.”
Lindsey finished the game with 13 points, five rebounds and four assists.
“Shawn has been playing a very complete game for us,” Schreiber said. “He had some rebounds and assists. He is playing a very mature game. He is taking his shot when he should, he is not forcing shots and he is playing solid.”
Defensive pressure and rebounding helped the Wildcats run away with the game in the second half. Lakeview outscored the Warriors 38-21 in the second half. The game was tied 26-26 at halftime.
“I think we are even with that team. Late in the game we didn’t turn the ball over and played pretty solidly,” Schreiber said. “We have to work on our free throws, but I think that is the type of team we are going to have to compete with.”
Monday’s ability to spread the ball around and defensive intensity pleased Schreiber.
“I was just very pleased with the fact they could not key one player and beat us,” Schreiber said. “That is why we lost a couple of ballgames, not playing defense. We know we have to play hard. I thought we did that tonight.”
The Wildcats will not play again until after Christmas vacation, when they host Reed City on Jan. 7. Schreiber said that will give his team time to work on a few areas of need.
“We need to stay out of foul trouble. Sometimes we get too aggressive,” Schreiber said. “We are young and have to get rid of some of that stuff, but we have some time to work on those things.”
LAKEVIEW 64, CHIPPEWA HILLS 47
Chip Hills 12 14 12 9 — 47
Lakeview 13 13 22 16 — 64
CHIP HILLS (2-2) — Ball 2 2-2 6, Tarbell 1 4-6 6, Key 6 4-5 17, Schafer 1 0-0 2, Lewandowski 3 0-0 6, Wheat 0 2-2 2, Miller 0 2-3 2, VanCuren 0 2-2 2, H. Denslow 1 2-5 4. Totals: 14 18-23 47. Three-point goals: Key. Total fouls: 17. Fouled out: None.
LAKEVIEW (3-2) — Wandel 1 1-2 3, Lindsey 5 0-0 13, Jensen 1 0-0 2, Hamlin 2 0-0 4, Ruvalcaba 6 0-2 14, Zuluaga-Torres 6 6-10 18, Shurlow 4 1-2 9, Stephens 0 1-2 1. Totals: 25 9-18 64. Three-point goals: Lindsey 3, Ruvalcaba 2. Total fouls: 21. Fouled out: Lindsey.