Effingham Daily News
It was a far cry from last week's 44-point victory over Beecher City, but Dieterich bested the Eagles once again in the National Trail Conference tournament quarterfinals Wednesday, winning 46-38.
The Movin' Maroons jumped out in front early, taking a 16-4 lead by the 1:20 mark of the first quarter.
They cruised from there, although Dieterich coach Jeff Staser wasn't necessarily happy with that.
"After the first four minutes, last week crept into our heads a little bit too much and we got soft," Staser said. "We didn't battle like we should. They all admitted it in the locker room after."
Dieterich used the 3-pointer to great effect throughout the first half, as Tanner Traub and Nick Feldhake buried three threes in the half to push the lead to 22-8.
From there, Dieterich cut inside, spreading around the scoring to great effect, with six players topping five points.
Alex Bohnhoff led the charge with 10 points, with Feldhake and Devin Aherin scoring nine each.
"I'm happy with that," Staser said. "It shows we're a team that will spread the ball around, that's one of our strengths. We like that, we can score in bunches."
Beecher City kept the fight up, never letting Dieterich get too comfortable with the lead.
While it wasn't a question of effort, the Beecher City offense never got into a rhythm as the Eagles are still adjusting to playing without Brady Barnes and Daniel Harder.
"It's a situation where we're still lacking offensive execution," said Beecher City coach Jason Eirhart. "The kids have to believe in what we can do.
"Sometimes, not all five believe in what we can do, so we get out of stuff too quick. We're playing hard, but we're not always executing like we need to."
The Eagles cut the lead from 30-14 at the half to 38-25 after the third quarter, and pushed the score within eight points by the end of the fourth with some determined play.
Jacob Kenter, Jackson Bales and Adam Doty all had eight points each for the Eagles, while Brandon Gardner added six of his own.
"We have to come up with all the loose balls," Eirhart said. :That's how you have to even it out with a bigger team. I thought it came down to turnovers and offensive execution."
Beecher City (7-7) falls to the loser's bracket, taking on Stew-Stras at 6:15 p.m. Friday night for a spot in the fifth-place game, with the loser going home.
Dieterich (13-5) advances to the tournament semifinals, facing off with an Altamont team they topped 67-59 last Friday night.
The two teams played for the conference championship last year, with Dieterich taking home the crown. Staser knows the semifinal, scheduled for 7:45 p.m. Friday, will be another tough battle.
"John (Niebrugge's) going to have those guys pumped up, they're going to be on their home floor," he said. "You know it's going to be loud, it's going to be a tremendous ballgame and it'll take a tremendous effort."
Beecher City 6 8 11 13 38
Dieterich 16 14 8 8 46
Beecher City: Gardner 6, Giles 2, Doty 8, Bales 8, Lagerhausen 4, Rexroad 2, Kenter 8
Dieterich: Traub 6, Campbell 2, Bohnhoff 10, Feldhake 9, L. Niemerg 6, Aherin 9, T. Niemerg 4