Cox, Omot lead Chargers by JWP 89-62

Staff photo by Travis Rosenau Minnesota Valley Lutheran’s Dunwa Omot scores on a bucket inside against Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton on Saturday at MVL High School.

NEW ULM — Behind a 23-point, 14-rebound double-double by Mason Cox, Minnesota Valley Lutheran rolled to an 89-62 win over Janesville-Waldorf-Pemberton in nonconference boys’ basketball action on Saturday afternoon.

Dunwa Omot also added 20 points, six assists and five steals for MVL, while Kyreis Harrison had 11 points and four rebounds and Jace Marotz had 10 points and seven boards.

Nick Bleick and Leyton Brau each added 8 points off the bench for the Chargers.

Coming off of a home win over Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart just a night before, MVL had to shake off a little early rust against JWP. Neither the Bulldogs or Chargers could gain much of an upper hand in the first eight minutes of play before MVL pulled ahead 28-21 after a 9-0 run that was capped off on a bucket inside by Harrison.

“They were a little tired, little stiff [early in the game],” MVL head coach Craig Morgan said of his team. “Maybe they wouldn’t say it, but it might of been just a little lag there. But JWP played well, too, in that first half. They set some nice screens and we didn’t get over the top of them quite well enough.”

The remainder of the first half was all Chargers, though, as Omot, Marotz and Cox each added a bucket in the paint before Omot drained consecutive 3s to give MVL a 45-26 lead. The Chargers carried a 47-31 lead into halftime.

MVL jumped out to an 8-0 run in the second half before Ben Schrom stopped the run with a bucket inside.

MVL then got another 8-0 run moments later after a basket by Harrison, back-to-back buckets in the paint by Marotz and a steal and layup from Omot.

That gave MVL a 65-35 lead and forced JWP to burn a timeout with 14:01 left in the game. Cox added a pair of free throws to extend the Chargers’ lead after the timeout before Cole Gunderson hit a 3 to stop the bleeding for the Bulldogs.

Gunderson led JWP with 20 points, while Kobe Weimert added 18 points.

The Chargers outrebounded the Bulldogs 41-22 and outshot them 52% to 40%.

“Coming out of halftime, our defensive pressure was much better, our intensity was better,” Morgan said. “And Jace, Mason and Ky, they can rebound with the best of them. And they know they can slash and they’re just very athletic and fun to have.”

MVL got its largest lead of the game, 75-42, after a basket inside by Bleick.

MVL (3-0) hosts Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday in Tomahawk Conference action.