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GILMAN BOYS BASKETBALL - A little better, but Dons still put it away quickly

A little better, but Dons still put it away quickly A little better, but Dons still put it away quickly


Not surprisingly, Division 5’s top-ranked team, Columbus Catholic, didn’t take long to create separation Friday in its second matchup of the season with Gilman, but the host Pirates did eventually get some offense going and kept the score a bit closer this time, falling 73-27 to close out Eastern Cloverbelt Conference play.

Brayden Olynick scored eight points, while Caleb Marion added seven while making two of three shots from the field and grabbing five rebounds in the Senior Night loss.

After falling behind 45-4 about 14 minutes into the game, Gilman was only outscored 28-23 the rest of the way while finishing conference play at 2-12.

Columbus Catholic improved to 22-1 and ended league play at a perfect 14-0.

As they did in the first meeting, the Dons blitzed Gilman from the 3-point line in the first half, making 11 of 20 long-range shots. Charlie Moore had five of those on his way to a game-high 17 points, all of which he scored in the first half.

Max Ustianowski scored in the paint to finally slow the Dons’ big start. Logan Halida got a steal and score and Marion got two rebound baskets in an 8-3 spurt that got the score to 48-12. Tony Syryczuk added a short bank shot after rebounding his own missed free throw. It was 54-15 at halftime.

Beau Pockat and Olynick hit 3-pointers to account for half of Gilman’s second-half points.

Syryczuk scored five points and had four rebounds and two steals. Pockat finished with three points, while Ustianowski and Halida scored two each.

Cy Becker had 14 points for Columbus Catholic, who will play Bloomer Saturday afternoon in the Cloverbelt Conference’s championship game in Neillsville.

The Dons shot 51.1% overall from the field (24 of 47), including 13 of 29 on 3s. They also turned 20 Gilman turnovers into 27 points.

The Pirates (3-19) overall will finish the regular season against the team they started it against, Thorp, in the seventh-place game of the Cloverbelt Crossovers tonight, Thursday, in Gilman. Thorp (4-10, 11-12) won that first game 5720 on Nov. 28.

Gilman is the 14th seed in its WIAA Division 5 sectional half-bracket and will play at high-scoring Winter, the three-seed, in Tuesday’s regional opener. The Warriors won the East Lakeland Conference at 13-3, are 17-7 overall and average 81.8 points per game. They beat Lake Holcombe Friday 116-82.