Fairmont rolls over New Ulm

NEW ULM – Fairmont hit five of its first six 3-pointers as the Cardinals jumped to a quick 10-0 lead and went on to top New Ulm 78-52 Thursday night in South Central Conference boy’s basketball.

Mitch Pfingsten led the Cardinals (13-1, 5-1 South Central) with 18 points. Luke Becker and Jay Ruen each ended with 14 with Josh Eversman adding 13.

Grant Kannegiesser led the Eagles (2-11, 0-5) with 18 points.

For New Ulm coach Steve Foley, it was a case of knowing what to do but being helpless to do anything about the hot-shooting Cardinals.

‘They shot the lights out,” Foley said. “I felt like we were there contesting shots but they could not miss. We knew who their shooters were, but they did not miss.”

Fairmont built a 20-7 lead when Becker canned the fifth 3-pointer of the first half, which was what Fairmont coach Jared Thompson was hoping for.

“I was pleased with how we started,” Thompson said. “We got off to a great start, which was what we were hoping for early in the game to get us in the up-tempo.”

A 7-0 run by the Cardinals sparked by a 3 from Ruen increased the lead to 30-14 before a bucket courtesy of Ben Abel off of the ninth New Ulm turnover saw Fairmont in cruise control at 37-16.

“We turned the ball over too much to start the game,” Foley said of the 13 turnovers in the first half.

New Ulm, which plays at Faribault on Saturday, managed to cut into the Fairmont lead trimming a 41-18 deficit to pull to within 43-28 on a Kannegiesser basket.

“Once we settled down a little, took care of the ball and took good shots, we were fine,” Foley said.

Down 51-30 at halftime, the Eagles played a more balanced second half in staying with the Cardinals.

Two 3-pointers from Jackson Yackley and a short burst on two free throws from Peder Johnson and a conventional three-point play from Kannegiesser pulled New Ulm to within 67-46.

Fairmont cooled off in its shots from beyond the arc, missing all seven in the second half.

“That helped that they were not as hot,” Foley said. “But I thought that in the second half the kids kept working hard – they could have mailed it in.”

Kannegiesser’s play on offense and defense also pleased Foley.

“We had him matched up with Eversman but he played well on both sides of the ball,” Foley said. “He has become that solid 15-18 points a game player inside and outside.”

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