After a nail-biting victory over McFarland the night before, the DeForest boys basketball team was in command from start to finish in last Saturday’s 75-61 WIAA Division 2 regional final victory over host Monroe.
The win over the second-seeded Cheesemakers gave the third-seeded Norskies their second straight regional title.
DeForest will play top-seeded Stoughton in the sectional semifinals in McFarland at 7 p.m. on March 12. The Vikings advanced with a 53-45 victory over fourth-seeded Reedsburg on Saturday.
The Norskies have won five straight games to improve to 18-6 on the year.
DeForest had an impressive offensive night against the Cheesemakers. The Norskies shot 49 percent (25-of-51) from the field, 44 percent (8-of-18) from three-point range and 89 percent (17-of-19) from the free throw line.
In the first half on Saturday, the Norskies turned to senior Jahyl Bonds on offense and sophomore Deven Magli on defense.
“Jahyl and Deven got us off to a great start,” DeForest coach Craig Weisbrod said.
Bonds had 10 points in the first half, while Magli made life hard on Monroe’s 6-foot-8 post Cade Meyer.
“Deven Magli had an unbelievable game defensively,” Weisbrod said. “He harassed Cade Meyer all night long. He took three charges. He took Monroe out of a lot of things they like to do. Outstanding performance by that young man.”
The Norskies jumped out to a 17-11 lead on the Cheesemakers to set the tone early.
DeForest led by as many as 15 points, 32-17, in the first half.
The Cheesemakers closed out the first half strong and cut the deficit to 34-28 at halftime.
The Norskies never relinquished the lead in the second half as they outscored the Cheesemakers 41-33.
Schroeder, Magli and Max Weisbrod each had a basket to open the second half and increase the lead to 40-28.
Weisbrod had a three-pointer with 11:50 remaining to put DeForest up 49-32.
“I thought Trey (Schroeder) and Max (Weisbrod) really dictated to the Monroe defense tonight,” Craig Weisbrod said. “They had a hard time guarding both of them.”
Monroe cut the deficit to 10 points, 54-44, with 6:16 remaining,
The Norski lead was down to nine, 67-58, with just under two minutes to play in the game, but DeForest made its free throws down the stretch.
Schroeder had another big night for the Norskies. He poured in a team-high 21 points. He also dished out a team-best six assists.
“Trey was great all night long,” Weisbrod said. “He continually got into the lane and hit runners or kicked it out for three. They had no answer for him. He is really locked in offensively and defensively right now. This is the right time of the year to get hot.”
Weisbrod (18 points), Bonds (13) and Magli (12) also scored in double figures for DeForest.
Magli grabbed a team-high nine rebounds, while Weisbrod had four.
Meyer came away with 24 points for the Cheesemakers, while JT Seagreaves added 10.
The sectional title game is set for 7 p.m. on March 14 in Oregon.