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Springfield picks up first win of the season

Staff photo by Steve Muscatello Springfield’s Mason Leonard takes a shot after getting past Mason Sellner (14) of Sleepy Eye Thursday at Sleepy Eye High School.

SLEEPY EYE — Mason Leonard scored 21 points and Brendan Buerkle finished with 15 as Springfield picked up a 59-48 Tomahawk Conference victory over Sleepy Eye on Thursday.

The victory was the first of the season for the Tigers, who improved to 1-1.

Kegan Heiderscheidt led the Indians with 22 points, five rebounds and six blocks. Erizan Traconis finished with 15 points, six rebounds and three steals and Jack Nelson scored 8 points.

The Tigers jumped out to an 8-0 lead and used the 3-pointer to their advantage early on, hitting five from outside in the first 8 minutes. That 8-minute run put the Tigers up 24-11, but the Indians slowly chipped away and got back to within 6 on a jumper with 5:25 left in the half.

While the Indians made it close later in the half, the Tigers got three consecutive baskets from Leonard to go up 34-22 and the Tigers took a 38-27 lead into halftime.

In the second half, the Indians cut into the lead and their defense stepped up. Springfield scored only 6 points in the first 12 minutes of the half and the Indians closed the gap to 44-41 thanks to some big plays from Heiderscheidt.

Up 48-41, Buerkle hit a 3 to give the Tigers a 51-41 lead before the Indians responded with one of their own with 3:30 left in the game.

The Indians put together a late rally at the end, led by a couple of baskets from Heiderscheidt with less than a minute to go, but the Tigers held on.

Springfield (1-1) hosts Gibbon-Fairfax-Winthrop on Monday while Sleepy Eye (0-3) is at Buffalo Lake-Hector-Stewart on Tuesday.

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