A high-scoring contest between the Appleton East Patriots and Hortonville Polar Bear varsity boys’ basketball teams came down to an overtime period, with the home team pulling out an 86-80 win.
Both teams shot the ball well from the opening tip, and Hortonville took a 17-14 lead after one quarter of play.
Appleton East outscored the Polar Bears 16-15 in the second quarter to cut the home team’s lead to 32-30 at halftime.
Coming out of halftime, the offense heated up even more. The Patriots outscored Hortonville 21-19 to tie the game going into the fourth quarter.
In the fourth quarter, the Patriots and Polar Bears traded baskets at an alarming rate. The score remained tied, 73-73, after both teams scored 22 points in the final frame.
Needing overtime to determine a winner, the Polar Bears outscored the Patriots 13-7 in the extra period to cap a wild, 86-80 victory.
The Polar Bears were white-hot from the floor, making 26 of 52 shots (50 percent) including 7 of 25 from 3-point range (28 percent) and 27 of 34 from the free throw line (79 percent). The team also pulled down 17 rebounds, dished out 12 assists, blocked four shots, came up with five steals and turned the ball over just five times.
Charlie Schabo went off for 28 points to lead the Polar Bears, while Kyle Witthuhn was close behind with 26 points. Sean Killoren netted 10, Ryan Krueger added nine, Trenton Knuppel added six, Jake Sommers tallied three, and Reece Frederick and Sam Thompson both scored two.
Fond du Lac 66, Hortonville 61
The Polar Bears had trouble in the second and fourth quarter in a five-point loss to the visiting Cardinals on Friday, Feb. 20.
Hortonville led 19-14 after one quarter and 35-24 at halftime, but the Cardinals came back. Fond du Lac outscored Hortonville 20-11 to cut the deficit to two points heading into the fourth quarter. In the final frame, the Cardinals outscored the Polar Bears 22-15 to escape with the win.
Witthuhn led Hortonville with 22 points, while Schabo added 17. Krueger tallied 12, Sommers added four, Killoren netted three, and Braden Stoeger contributed one.
The Polar Bears honored seniors Ethan Breidel, Reece Frederick, Sean Killoren, Trenton Knuppel, Kellen Krueger, Jake Sommers, and Alex Turkow. The seniors were introduced prior to the game and a special pamphlet with a short bio on each player was available at the gate. Fans applauded the seniors as they took the court, recognizing the many years of hard work each athlete has put into the sport.
Hortonville, seeded second in a WIAA Division 2 Regional, will host third-seeded Antigo at 7 p.m. Friday, March 6. The winner of that game will play the winner of Shawano vs. New London or Waupaca at 7 p.m. Saturday, March 7. The location of that game is yet to be determined.