Rattlers 85 Kings 83
The Red Deer Polytechnic Kings basketball team battled until the end but came up just short against the Medicine Hat Rattlers.
The Rattlers had the last laugh with an 85-83 victory at the Gary W. Harris Canada Games Centre Saturday afternoon.
RDP jumped out to a 19-15 lead at the end of the opening frame but the Rattlers came back after a poor shooting display by the Kings in the second quarter to lead 41-32 at halftime.
However, in the third quarter, the Kings came to play and stormed back into the game to lead 62-61 into the final quarter after a 30-point frame for the home team.
In the fourth, the two teams exchanged leads and hit plenty of shots down the stretch but the Rattlers took advantage of good offensive looks to come out with the win.
Head coach Darren Graham said he thought his team was “gutsy” but ultimately didn’t execute at a high enough level at either end of the court to establish a lead at the end.
“It was kind of scrappy and we just didn’t make enough plays. [We got] into a little foul trouble there at the end and didn’t have enough steam to finish it off,” he said.
“I think we could have moved the ball a little bit more and been a bit more choosy on the shots we took.”
The Kings distributed the scoring throughout the lineup evenly, including 10 points from Payton Baltzer, 10 points from Pierce Shybunka, 12 points from Cole Wicker, 14 points from José Mauro Barrozo Júnior, and 13 points from Brett Hochhausen. However, the leading scorer for the Kings was Eduardo Crespo who came off the bench for 18 points.
“Eduardo Crespo just came off the soccer season so it was nice to have him back in the mix. Hochhausen had a really nice weekend. He had 16 rebounds yesterday and 13 today, so 30 rebounds in a weekend is really good. Jose had 21 rebounds yesterday and a handful today so he’s probably our MVP at this point,” Graham said.
Both Kings and Queens will play at the University Alberta-Augustana Friday, Nov. 4 at 6 p.m. and 8 p.m.