Delta sizzles early in win over Saxony

Saturday, January 29, 2005

Kevin Bartels and Aaron Kinder combined for 54 points as Delta eased past host Saxony Lutheran 67-54 in boys basketball action Friday night.

On his way to 21 points, Kinder came out of the gates on fire, nearly putting the game out of reach within the first five minutes. Before a near-capacity crowd had even been able to get settled, Kinder hit three 3-pointers and had the Bobcats (9-8) up 13-2. Kinder had 13 points in the first quarter, which ended with Delta ahead 22-10.

"Aaron Kinder made a liar out of me," Saxony Lutheran coach John Daniel said. "I told my kids he was an average shooter, then he hits three 3-pointers right off the bat and gets us in a hole we couldn't come back from."

Bartels came on strong in the second quarter, providing seven straight points for the Bobcats in one stretch. The Crusaders (11-3) were not about to go quietly, though, using an 11-2 run to close the gap to 31-26 late in the half. Delta scored a last-second layup to go into halftime up 35-26.

At the half, Kinder had 17 points, and Bartels had 11. Delta, which entered the night with a four-game losing streak, attempted just four free throws in the first half and did much of its damage from the outside shooting.

"It has been a while since we got a win, so for the last couple of practices we went back to the fundamentals," Delta coach Shawn Kinder said.

Saxony Lutheran remained within striking distance in the third quarter, but there was simply no stopping Bartels. Every time the Crusaders inched closer, Bartels was there to put in a layin or make a short jumper. Bartels netted 15 points in the quarter, and Delta led 52-41.

"I have never been this excited after a 13-point loss," Daniel said. "Their shooting put us in a big hole, but we just battled and made some good runs at them."

Delta's lead dipped to seven early in the fourth quarter, but Saxony Lutheran got no closer. Bartels scored another seven points in the fourth to finish with a game-high 33. Terrence Below, coming back from an injury, chipped in seven points for a Delta team which goes just six deep.

"We've been fighting numbers all year. We just got Terrence Below back recently," Kinder said. "He's only about 50 or 60 percent, but he's giving us some minutes. He started tonight and gave us some good minutes."

Casey Petzoldt led Saxony Lutheran with 15 points, Lauren Lueders had 14 and Tim Lorenz scored 10. Lueders finished with four 3-pointers.

"Lauren's struggled a little bit the last three games, but she showed what's she's made of tonight," Daniel said.

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