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Petersen sparks Columbus High win

December 9, 2017 GMT

COLUMBUS — Ralston used the long ball to stay within striking distance of Columbus High, but the Discoverers were never really threatened after the first quarter Friday night in a 74-59 home victory.

The Rams knocked down 13 of 39 attempts from beyond the arc, and Columbus head coach Jimmy Motz will live with that.

“We knew going in that they were going to hoist them,” he said. “We tried to do as good a job as we could in terms of getting closeouts on shooters.”

His main concerns were dictating the tempo and controlling the glass, and he thought his team took another step forward in those areas.

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“I thought our effort was much better on the glass than last Saturday,” Motz said.

For the second consecutive game, Blake Petersen was the spark plug for the Discoverers.

He threw down three dunks in the game on his way to a game-high 24 points. His first, a one-handed jam over Ralston’s Jordin Apreza-Guzman just moments into the game, ignited a 17-3 run that put the Discoverers ahead 17-6.

“He set the tone with that huge dunk and we fed off that,” Motz said.

Petersen and Andy Pike, who added 15 points on five 3-pointers, each had six points in the first quarter as Columbus led 20-11.

The Discoverers scored the first six points of the second quarter to take a 15-point lead. Ralston cut the deficit to single digits moments later when Tarik Smith, who had a team-high 15 points, hit two treys on the same possession. A loose-ball foul as his first 3-pointer went through the net kept the ball with Ralston and Smith capitalized with another triple.

After Ralston again cut the deficit to single digits, this time at 29-21, Columbus’ Jaz Ackerson went on a 7-0 run by himself, hitting a mid-range jumper, 3-pointer and layup. CHS led by double digits the rest of the game.

Ackerson finished with 15 points.

“We had a lot of contributions from a lot of different guys,” Motz said. “That’s how we’re going to win games.”

Telegram Super Senior Michael Koch was held to single-digit scoring for the third consecutive game to start the season, but Motz knows he’s been battling through a lot while adjusting to being the guy opposing teams focus on stopping. Koch is playing with a torn labrum in his left shoulder and was sick most of the week.

“I think he’s pressing too much at times,” Motz said. “He just needs to take care of himself and get well.”

Columbus heads to Hastings on Saturday for an important conference game. Motz expects a good game and a similar style of play that Ralston showed Friday night.

“They’re a very good team,” he said. “They’ll shoot a lot of transition 3-pointers and don’t have much inside.”

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