NEW ULM - With more than13 minutes to play in the Redwood Valley/New Ulm boy's basketball game Monday night, the Redwood Valley Cardinals led the New Ulm Eagles by a close 48-39 score following a six-point run by New Ulm.
But there is a reason that the Cardinals have a 13-4 record.
Redwood Valley scored 12 of the next 14 points in the game and outscored the Eagles to close out the game as the Cardinals went on to a 86-55 win over New Ulm in non-conference basketball.
Taquez Perkins led Redwood Valley with 24 points with Sam Pendleton adding 19.
Grant Kannegiesser led New Ulm with 23 points.
For New Ulm and coach Steve Foley, the first 23 minutes of the game was a case of executing their game plan.
"We controlled the tempo in the first half and that was our game plan," he said. "We wanted to get the ball inside, be patient on offense and make them play defense. And for the most part of the first half we did a pretty good job of that with our zone which was effective."
The Eagles hung with the Cardinals in that first 18 minutes as they cut a 24-14 Redwood Valley lead to 24-18 on four free throws from Kannegiesser.
Perkins rallied the Cardinals scoring the next 10 points to lift Redwood Valley to a 37-24 lead with 1:30 left in the first half before Jackson Yackley sank a free throw before burying a 3-pointer to bring New Ulm to within 39-28 at the half.
"We had some turnovers in the first half and we took some quick shots," Foley said about that first half. "And they were off to the races."
The second half was almost a mirror of the first half.
New Ulm trailed the Cardinals 48-31 at rhe 15:30 mark of the second half before a Tyler Dittrich basket started an 8-0 run by the Eagles as they cut the lead to 48-39.
But that was when Redwood Valley pulled away.
A Cade Johnson 3-pointer ignited a 12-2 run as the Cardinals increased their lead to 60-41. They followed that with an 8-3 run for a 68-46 lead with seven minutes left in the game.
New Ulm cut the lead to 71-15 on a Tanner Ogren baskets but the Cardinals scored the next nine points for an 80-51 lead.
Despite the loss, Foley had some words for his team after the game.
"I told them that there is as saying that you are not very far from being a good team and you are not very far from being a bad team," he said. "I think that we are right there from being a pretty good team."