It came down to the wire, but the DeForest boys basketball team had its three-game win streak snapped on Saturday. The Norskies suffered their first Badger North Conference loss in Waunakee.
The host Warriors held on for a 57-54 victory.
“I thought our guys played really hard,” DeForest coach Craig Weisbrod said. “They did a great job coming back. At one point in the second half, we were down 13. We really let Waunakee dictate tempo when they were on offense. They were deliberate and that not only took the air out of the ball, but it limited our possessions in the first half.”
The Norskies (6-2 overall) fell out of first place in the Badger North with the loss. They are now 4-1 and trail both Reedsburg (5-0) and Waunakee (5-0).
DeForest won both meetings with Waunakee last season.
The teams traded baskets for most of the first half as they felt each other out.
“It was a grinder and we had our chances,” Weisbrod said.
A basket by Colby Hartig with 8 minutes, 33 seconds remaining in the first half helped the Norskies pull to within 17-15. However, Waunakee made its first run to close out the first half.
The Warriors ended the first half on a 13-8 run. They led 30-23 at halftime.
Waunakee carried the momentum into the second half. They opened with an 8-2 run to go up 38-25.
The Norskies slowly climbed back in the game. They pulled to within four, 48-44, after a free throw by Jack Creger with 5:30 remaining.
DeForest got a three-pointer from Jahyl Bonds with 2:41 left to cut the deficit to 53-51.
After a pair of free throws by Max Weisbrod with 1:42 remaining, the Norskies only trailed by a point, 54-53.
“We did a nice job in our press in the second half, forcing the tempo to increase,” Weisbrod said. “We had some really nice looks in the second half during our comeback that just didn’t go in.”
The Norskies were still within a point, 55-54, after a free throw by Hartig with eight seconds remaining.
Waunakee got a pair of free throws from Jaxson Zibell with seven seconds left to go up 57-54.
DeForest had a chance to tie the game in the final seconds, but Weisbrod missed a three-point attempt as time expired.
Hartig led the Norskies with 17 points, while Weisbrod finished with 11. Creger, Trey Schroeder and Alex Winters all contributed six points.
Weisbrod led DeForest with s0even rebounds, while Hartig had six.
Schroeder paced the Norskies’ offense with six assists, while Deven Magli led the defense with four steals.