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Eagles secure basketball title

The Solon Springs boys basketball team is guaranteed at least a share of its second consecutive Indianhead Conference title.

Following a 76-50 win at Hurley Friday night, the Eagles sit atop the standings with only Drummond able to tie for the conference crown. Solon Springs is 13-3 in the conference, while Drummond is 11-3.

The Lumberjacks host Mercer Wednesday and Hurley Thursday to close out their conference schedule. Solon Springs played its final regular season game Friday.

“It was a great team effort,” said Dale Rajala, Eagles head coach. “We had our best game of the season and the timing couldn’t have been better.”

The Eagles began Friday’s game at Hurley with a 13-0 run behind scorching perimeter shooting. Chase Latvala hit two 3-pointers and Caden Smith hit another to give Solon Springs the lead.

Smith went on to add two more 3-pointers in the half, and Reid Lisson counted one 3-pointer among his 12 first-half points to put the Eagles up 33-21 at halftime.

In the second half, Jens Gehl scored all 12 of his points, and Latvala continued to drain shots from long range with four more 3-pointers.

The Eagles scored 43 points in the second half on 16 field goals and 7-of-8 shooting at the free-throw line.

For the night, Latvala finished with six 3-pointers and a game-high 20 points. Lisson followed with 17 points, Smith had 13 and Gehl had 12.

Carson Thewis led Hurley with 12 points, and Justin Sukanen had eight.

“This is a special group of kids,” Rajala said. “Losing five seniors (from last year) and starting out 1-2, they really put in the time and worked very hard to get to this point. I couldn’t be more proud.

“Hopefully we can continue to improve moving forward.”

Solon Springs (17-5) was awarded the No. 2 seed for the upcoming WIAA Division 5 playoffs and will host Winter (2-17) at 7 p.m. Feb. 28.


Hurley..................................... 21         29        —         50

Solon Springs......................... 33         43        —         76

Hurley — Carson Thewis 12, Justin Sukanen 8, Isaac DeCarlo 7, Dante Bender 6, Kris Bluse 6, Ryley Eitrem 4, Scott Subert 2, Josh Quello 2, Tandrell Foster 1.

3-point goals — Sukanen 2, DeCarlo, Thewis.

Solon Springs — Chase Latvala 20, Reid Lisson 17, Caden Smith 13, Jens Gehl 12, Nick Zosel 6, Zach Rajala 4, Alex Hunter 2, Aaron Pfister 2.

3-point goals — Latvala 6, Smith 3, Lisson.