Eagles head to title game after pair of wins

Published 3:00 am Saturday, December 17, 2016

The Goshen Eagles earned a spot in the championship game of the Brantley Tournament with a pair of wins against Pleasant Home and Luverne on Friday.

The Eagles took round one against Pleasant Home 65-57 before defeating the Tigers of Luverne 62-40.

“I thought we played very well for having to play two games,” said Eagles head coach Ethan Carroll said. “The first game we were a little rocky, but they were a pretty good ball team. We got some turnovers and hit some free throws to seal the deal.”

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The Eagles found themselves trailing by four points at the end of the first quarter against Pleasant Home. After entering halftime even at 33, the Eagles turned up the pace in the second half and outscored Pleasant Home 32-24 to seal the win.

“We woke up a little bit in the second half and realized that we were in a ball game,” Carroll said. “We had a dog fight and we found out the character of the team. They did a good job and answered the call.”

Zack Alford led the Eagles in scoring with 26 points, while Michael Hollis added 20.

“They shot the ball well,” Carroll said. “They have been shooting the ball well during this first portion of the season. They have been attacking the gaps well and the biggest thing is they have been making free throws.”

Against Luverne, the Eagles got the early lead and rode it to the end thanks to a high energy level.

“I was very pleased,” Carroll said. “As a coaching staff we were pleased with our energy. We got the ball inside and we got our big guys to work some. We created some turnovers and got some transition buckets. We got some younger guys in and we got some good bench points.”

The Eagles went into halftime leading 38-16, but came out in the third quarter and allowed eight straight points.

“We had to regroup and focus on what we did in the first half that made us successful,” Carroll said. “Luverne came out firing away.”

The bench picked up some key points down the stretch to secure the win for the Eagles.

Goshen will now head to the championship where they will take on Linden.