Hatchet hoopsters take down conference rivals Antigo, Lakeland

For the Tomahawk Leader

TOMAHAWK – The Tomahawk Hatchet boys’ basketball team won two Great Northern Conference games last week.

The Hatchets’ first victory of the week came at Hatchet Fieldhouse on Tuesday, Feb. 2, where Tomahawk edged out Antigo for a 51 to 48 victory.

Head coach Jacob Jarvensivu said the Hatchets scored on their first four possessions and jumped out to an early 8 to 0 lead. Tomahawk would hold that lead until late in the second half, when Antigo went on a run to take a 24 to 20 lead into halftime. The Hatchets were able to start out the second half strong, but after three key Hatchet players got into foul trouble, the Red Robins were able to chip away at the Hatchets’ lead. However, the Hatchets managed to fend off all of the Red Robins’ runs and held the lead through the end of the game, earning their first conference victory of the season. Jarvensivu noted that Tomahawk never trailed Antigo at any point in the game.

Drew Bolder led the Hatchets with 21 points, and Payton Bunce added 18 points and 15 rebounds.

“I thought that we were really good at taking care of the ball today, and that is what resulted in our victory,” Jarvensivu stated after the game. “With only 10 turnovers, we will have a chance to beat anyone. We shot 36% from the field and Antigo shot 40%, so it was cool to see the kids win one when we actually didn’t shoot the ball well. I think this team has turned a corner and we are really starting to play some good basketball.”

The Hatchet hoopsters hosted Lakeland on Friday, Feb. 5, and came away with a 57 to 45 win.

Jarvensivu said the Hatchets’ 77 to 51 loss to the Thunderbirds earlier in the season was on the players’ minds, and Tomahawk went into the game looking for revenge.

The Hatchets jumped out to a big lead in the first half, at one point leading 22 to 13, but Lakeland was able to go on a 7-0 run before the half, whittling the Hatchets’ lead to two points. The T-Birds tied the game to start the second half, and the game was back-and forth for about five minutes before the Hatchets went on a 13 to 0 run. Tomahawk controlled the rest of the game to seal the victory.

Drew Bolder lead the Hatchets with 26 points, 16 of those coming in the second half. Payton Bunce had 12 points, and Elijah Scheffler had eight.

Jarvensivu said the win over Lakeland was the team’s most complete game of the season.

“We shot the ball well and did a really nice job against their physicality,” Jarvensivu stated. “The senior starting lineup did a great job all night, but the unsung heroes were Tyler Welke and Garrett Nelson off of the bench. Those two boys made plays on the defensive end of the floor that helped propel us to the victory.”

Jarvensivu added that last week was the first time the Hatchets won two conference games in the same week since joining the Great Northern Conference.

The Hatchet hoopsters were set to travel to Antigo on Monday, Feb. 8, before hosting Rhinelander on Tuesday, Feb. 9. The Tomahawk boys’ basketball team is slated to wrap up its regular season on Friday, Feb. 12, when Crandon comes to the Hatchet Fieldhouse for a matchup that starts at 7:15 p.m.

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