By Todd Fertig

Despite trailing by double digits in the first quarter, the Rossville boys won a barnburner over rival Silver Lake Friday night in overtime, 87-79.

MasonJonesSL 1Junior Mason Jones led Rossville with 27 points, helping the Bulldawgs post an 87-79 overtime win over Silver Lake. [Photo by Rex Wolf/TSN]

Rossville trailed 19-9 after a period but scrapped back, cutting the deficit to 35-32 at halftime. Jakoby McDonnell came off the bench to score nine points in the period to spark the comeback.

A see-saw affair ensued, with numerous ties and lead changes.

Rossville’s Kameron Badura drilled a 3-pointer with just a few seconds remaining to send it to overtime tied at 72.

“In the end, it comes down to grit. We’re growing as a team in the adversity part of it,” said Rossville coach Brandon McDonnell. “Last year, when we went through some adversity, we didn’t know how to face it. And then it took everything down.

“I reiterate to the boys, ‘You’re supposed to be here. You can play with anybody. Now they’re believing it because of the belief they have in themselves.' ”

The packed gym was at a fever pitch in the fourth period, as is to be expected from the rivalry.

“I got to a point I got lightheaded,” coach McDonnell said. “I was like, ‘What is going on?’ That atmosphere, packed house, ‘War on 24’. You don’t want a different game. You want it to be hot and heavy, the fans loud, kind of obnoxious at times. It comes with the territory.”

Rossville’s Mason Jones hit three straight buckets to begin the overtime period, putting the Bulldawgs up 78-72. At that point, Silver Lake had to begin fouling to lengthen the game. Rossville hit nine of 10 free throws to lock up the victory.

Jones and Silver Lake sophomore Dayne Johnson locked in a scoring battle with Johnson finishing with 28 points and Jones scoring 27. Jones hit 12 of 15 field goal attempts and three of four free throws. Many of his points came off offensive rebounds.

“This rivalry is love and hate, but we’re all just big competitors,” Jones said. “We took an ‘L’ from them at the beginning of the season, and I just felt like we didn’t (play as well) as we should have. So, coming into this game, I came in with that chip on my shoulder ready to go.”

“Mason was scoring the ball and rebounding it at a high level,” McDonnell said. “He’s such an athlete and a great kid. Tonight, he did what he was supposed to do.”

KameronBaduraSL 1Cameron Miller scored 16 points in Rossville's 87-79 overtime win over Silver Lake Friday night. [Photo by Rex Wolf/TSN]

All five starters for Rossville broke double figures: Jones with 27, Cameron Miller 16, Tayson Horak 15, and Badura and Jack Donovan with 10 apiece.

Rossville improved to 11-6 on the season while Silver Lake fell to 10-7.

The Eagles’ Brody Deiter got 10 of his 17 points in the first period. Then Dayne Johnson took over, scoring 20 points after intermission.


Silver Lake     19 16 20 17 7 -- 79

Rossville           9 23 21 19 15 -- 87

Silver Lake (10-7, 4-4) – Lopez 4-9 4-4 13, D. Johnson 11-18 6-9 28, Whitehead 2-3 0-0 4, Deiter 8-14 1-2 17, S. Johnson 3-6 2-4 8, J. Johnson 1-6 0-0 3, Martin 3-6 0-0 6.Totals: 32-62 13-19 79.

Rossville (11-6, 5-2) – Badura 3-9 3-4 10, Donovan 3-11 2-2 10, Jones 12-15 3-4 27, Miller 6-11 1-2 16, Horak 3-10 6-6 15, McDonnell 4-12 0-0 9, Mildren 0-0 0-0 0, Bush 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 31-68 15-18 87.

3-point goals – Silver Lake 2 (Lopez 1, J. Johnson 1), Rossville 10 (Miller 3, Horak 3, Donovan 2, Badura 1, McDonnell 1). Total fouls – Silver Lake 14, Rossville 18. Fouled out – None. Technical fouls – None. 

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