While the No. 6-seeded Reedsville boys basketball team already had to beat a No. 1 seed to advance in the WIAA State Boys Basketball Tournament Division 4 bracket, it will have to do so once again if it is to advance to next week’s State semifinals.
Having defeated No. 1 Shiocton 55-50 on Thursday night, Reedsville (11-15, 5-13 Olympian Conference) now faces the test of No. 1 Amherst (21-3, 13-1 Central Wisconsin-Eight Conference) today at 1 p.m. at Waupaca High School.
The Panthers’ win over Shiocton gave them another common opponent with Amherst, which split a season series with Shiocton and, like Amherst, finished 13-1 in the CW-Eight. Amherst fell in the pair’s first meeting, a 54-37 road loss in early January, but won at home in early February 59-37.
The only other opponent the Panthers and Falcons each faced was Oshkosh Lourdes. Reedsville beat No. 3 Oshkosh Lourdes 38-37 in the second round of the postseason while Amherst fell in a 59-51 mid-January home loss to Oshkosh Lourdes. Since that loss, Amherst has won 13 straight.
Shiocton’s win over Amherst was one of three games in which the Falcons were held to fewer than 51 points, and in all three Amherst lost. Reedsville has been no stranger to forcing potent offenses to struggle this postseason as it enters today’s game allowing 55 points per game.
The Panthers, like they did against Shiocton, will likely look to slow the game’s pace down and control the boards while taking smart shots and spacing the floor on offense. Amherst, on paper, is not a tall team, and with Reedsville’s ability to box out, the Panthers might benefit from second-chance shots.
This would aid them in once again holding a potent offense at bay to earn what would be their fourth-consecutive upset victory.