Wolves thrash Eagles

STEPHENSON – Carney-Nadeau boys’ basketball coach Jake Polfus challenged his team to show more energy on Monday after a sluggish first game last week.

The Wolves answered their coach’s challenge by applying suffocating pressure on Stephenson and owning the rebounding category en route to a 75-33 victory.

“I wanted to see more energy tonight and we definitely brought it,” Polfus said. “We did a nice job rebounding the basketball and giving ourselves many second-chance opportunities.”

Carney-Nadeau set the tone early by applying a full-court press against the Eagles.

The pressure immediately affected Stephenson, causing several Eagle turnovers and a 28-9 Wolves lead after the first quarter.

Keenan Lampinen scored four quick points in the second quarter and Jason DuPont drained a 3-pointer to extend the Wolves lead to 37-11 two minutes into the second quarter.

The fast-pace offense continued for the Wolves as every time Stephenson missed a shot or turned the ball over, the Wolves went in fast-break mode.

Dionte Blahnik scored six points over the final few minutes of the quarter and finished with 12 for the half to guide Carney-Nadeau to a 52-20 lead at the half.

“Carney-Nadeau has a great basketball program and they looked as good as ever tonight,” Stephenson coach Joe Simon said. “I went with a smaller lineup to start the game to help cut down on turnovers, but they took advantage with their size and outrebounded us mightily.”

Carney-Nadeau took its pressure off in the second half, but controlled the boards even more and showed its depth on its bench as nine players finished with three points or more.

“We’re about four deep off the bench which is the deepest we’ve been in awhile,” Polfus said. “We’ll need that depth against a talented team like North Central on Thursday.”

Blahnik was a beast inside and finished with a game-high 18 points to lead Carney-Nadeau (2-0). Lampinen and Austin Johnson each finished with 10 points and DuPont added nine.

For the Eagles (1-2 overall), Levi Brock led the team with 13 points. Brandon Kau had 10 and Nathan Rasner added eight.

The Wolves forced 25 Stephenson turnovers.

“We’ll need to regroup and focus on taking care of the basketball going forward in practice,” Simon said. “This is a young group still learning how to play together and we’ll work hard to improve and handle pressure better.”