Dodger boys end losing skid
DES MOINES — The Fort Dodge boys had shown signs of moving forward recently, but the Dodgers hadn’t quite been able to turn the corner.
That all changed here on Tuesday, as FDSH snapped a 16-game losing skid with a 71-54 win at Des Moines East.
Senior Tysen Kershaw led four players in double figures with 25 points as the Dodgers prevailed for the first time since a season-opening triumph over now-No. 9 (Class 4A) Indianola.
Fort Dodge finally shook off the winless Scarlets down the stretch behind Kershaw, Carson Peterson (13 points), Asle Thorson (11), Drake Callon (10) and Brycen Bell (8).
“It’s just nice to be able to enjoy a win again and have fun in the locker room,” head coach Tom Daniel said. “We’ve been working toward this point and playing much better basketball recently. We basically said heading into this week we need to wipe the slate clean and start 1-0, then go from there. Treat the rest of the year like the postseason has started.
“There was some pressure on us. I know it was East’s Senior Night and they were looking to get that first win, but we have expectations around here ourselves and this has been a tough stretch to go through.”
The Dodgers got off to a strong start, but the Scarlets had erased an early deficit and pulled virtually even by halftime. Kershaw hit a shot at the buzzer to make it 25-22 FDSH heading into the break.
East kept things close until the early stages of the fourth quarter, when the Dodgers finally began to pull away.
“They pressed us and gave us everything we could handle,” Daniel said. ”I’m just really proud of the way we stayed composed and weathered the storm.
“After (not winning all of December and January), it’s not easy to just close a game out on the road. But our guys took care of it and didn’t panic. I think they deserve a lot of credit, given what they’ve been through, to not give up on us or each other.”
Daniel added it was a “welcome reprieve” to see the ball go through the basket and clear the 70-point hurdle for the first time this year. Fort Dodge had been averaging only 42 points per game before Tuesday.
“Tysen had 25 points, but was very unselfish and didn’t force anything. He was a great teammate,” Daniel said. “Asle had one of his better games. He was active defensively and rebounded well for us.
“Carson, Drake and Brycen all did a really nice job as well. This has to be our blueprint moving forward, which I think has been the case recently. It just hadn’t resulted in a win before (last night).”
Fort Dodge visits Mason City on Friday, before hosting Senior Night against top-ranked Ankeny Centennial on Tuesday.
FORT DODGE 71, DES MOINES EAST 54
Fort Dodge — Asle Thorson 11, Drake Callon 10, Carson Peterson 13, Nolan Daniel 0, Tysen Kershaw 25, Brycen Bell 8, Ashton Hage 0, Jaheim Clayton 2, Monterius Altman-Abrams 2, James Daniel 0.
Des Moines East — Derrick Troncoso 1, Greg Weaver-Horton 6, Bobby Smith 5, James Jefferson 25, Rashad Madyun 8, Brayden Carre 3, Shannon Merrett 6.
Quarter scores: Fort Dodge led 14-5, 25-22, 46-38.