TRUMAN - Jaron Denn cleared the 1,000-point career scoring plateau during Maple River's 70-61 loss to Class 2A, No. 1-ranked Litchfield on Saturday.
The Eagles' 6-foot-2 senior guard continued his high-scoring ways on torrid field-goal shooting at Truman/Martin Luther's expense on Tuesday night.
Denn singed the Truman nets on 9-for-11 shooting, including an incredible 6 of 6 from 3-point range, to amass a game-best 24 points to complement five assists to steer Maple River to an 80-46 Valley Conference victory over the BluejayKnights.
TRAPPED — Truman/Martin Luther teammates Cade Ekstrom (1) and Sam Geistfeld (10) trap Maple River guard Payton See during Valley Conference basketball action on Tuesday night in Truman. Photo by Leanna Becker
"It was nice that he (Denn) was able to reach it (the career milestone) in our second game of the season," said Eagles mentor Chad Ostermann, who's also a member of Maple River's 1,000-point fraternity.
Ironically, it took three minutes for Denn to produce his first points of the game, but his gliding 2-pointer off Michael Lewis' steal-turned-assist snapped a 4-all tie and helped trigger the Eagles' initial 13-2 scoring spurt.
Forward Sam Geistfeld, who topped the BluejayKnights with 18 points and three steals, snapped the nets on a 3-pointer off one of Cade Ekstrom's four assists to end Maple River's offensive outburst at 15-9 with 11:40 left in the opening half.
After Alex Weihe hauled in one of his game-high eight rebounds to earn a trip to the free throw line and sank a solo toss for T/ML, Denn displayed his incredible marksmanship by barely moving the net on a pull-up trifecta from the top of the key. Denn's 3 served as the catalyst behind Maple River's 18-4 offensive avalanche that built a 40-15 lead with 4:39 left before intermission.
Guard Ben Larson, who produced 17 points on stellar 7-for-8 field-goal shooting, delivered a 3 and a backcourt theft-turned-layup during the Eagles' run, while Denn buried two more long-range treys off the dribble.
"Not much you can do when Denn's making everything from both inside and outside," said Truman/Martin Luther mentor Roland Wendt. "It didn't help that we didn't make our free throws either. That was a big difference tonight."
The BluejayKnights reached the charity stripe a staggering 24 times during the first half, but managed to sink only 9. The home team finished 18-for-39 at the line on the night, while the Eagles made just 6 of 11 free throws on the entire game.
Geistfeld and Damarko Thomas pounded the lane and low post to open the second half to keep within 17 before Lewis and Denn triggered Maple River's 18-3 scoring surge at the 15-minute mark.
Denn swooshed two 3s, while Larson and Jonah Breiter chipped in solo treys during the run that extended the Eagles' gap to 67-35 with 11 minutes to go.
Center Brian Doering delivered 14 points behind 7-for-9 field-goal shooting and shared team-best board honors with forward Zach Krengel by garnering seven rebounds each. In fact, Krengel and Doering paced the Eagles' 34-18 edge on the glass.
Krengel and Breiter each distributed four assists, while Breiter and Larson pocketed three steals each.
Thomas and Chandler Greier each contributed eight points to the BluejayKnights' cause, while Weihe and Ekstrom scored five and four points, respectively.
Truman/Martin Luther (3-1, 0-1 Valley) travels to Sherburn on Friday night to face Martin County West.
Maple River (2-1, 1-0) hits the road to Minnehaha Academy on Friday night.
North Union 69, Clay Central-Everly 31 - The Warriors earned their first win of the season, downing the Mavericks 69-31 in a Corn Belt Conference game on Tuesday in Everly, Iowa.
Matt Adams and Colton McConnell each scored 11 points to top North Union, while Adams also grabbed four rebounds and made six steals.
Aric Runge scored 10 points and pulled down four rebounds for the Warriors, while Jacob Braddock also scored in double figures, recording 10 points to complement four steals.
Kaleb Olson scored seven points, while Corey Vaske scored six points for the Warriors.
Shane Mills grabbed a team-leading six rebounds and had three assists for North Union.
Chazz Brown scored 14 points to top CCE.
North Union went 24-for-47 shooting, sinking 4 of 12 3-pointers and 9 of 14 free throws.
North Union (1-5, 1-1 Corn Belt) travels to Manson, Iowa, for a 7:30 p.m. nonconference game against Manson-Northwest Webster on Thursday.
CCE 13- 4-12- 2-31
Martin County West 69, Nicollet 38 - The Mavericks went on a 21-0 run during the first half on their way to defeating the Raiders, 69-38, in a Valley Conference game on Tuesday night in Nicollet.
MCW's defense held the Raiders to just 14 points in the opening half, while scoring 49 to take a convincing lead at the break.
Cordell Weber scored a game-high 24 points to lead the Mavericks' offensive attack, while teammate Kyle Brolsma added 13 points in the win.
Mitch Sitzmann grabbed a team-leading five rebounds for MCW.
Matt Christenson led the Raiders' offensive effort by recording 14 points in the game.
The Mavericks went 26 of 52 from the field and made 9 of 12 free throws.
Martin County West (3-0, 2-0 Valley) hosts Truman/Martin Luther in a 7:30 p.m. Valley Conference game on Friday in Sherburn.
Mankato Loyola 66, Granada-Huntley-East Chain 55 - Carson Seifert scored 23 points to lead the Crusaders to a 66-55 nonconference victory over the Mustangs 66-55 on Tuesday night at East Chain School.
Ryan Shumski recorded a double-double performance by scoring 22 points and grabbing 13 rebounds for the Mustangs.
Dylan Petrowiak scored 10 points and distributed five assists for GHEC, while teammate Trent Stensland added eight points.
Konnor Kristenson pulled down 12 rebounds for the Mustangs.
Granada-Huntley-East Chain (1-3) travels to Cleveland for a 7:30 p.m. nonconference game on Thursday night.
Clay Central-Everly 38, North Union 32 - The Mavericks held on for a 38-32 Corn Belt Conference victory over the Warriors on Tuesday in Everly, Iowa.
Jasmine Clausen scored 10 points for the Warriors, while Aurora Oliver netted seven and made three steals.
Sarah Rolling grabbed six rebounds and garnered six points for North Union, while Dena Looft pulled down nine rebounds and Cheyanne Boland doled out three assists.
The Warriors went 10-for-30 shooting inside the arc, making just 2 of 20 3-point attempts and sinking 5 of 8 free throws.
North Union (4-2) travels to Manson for a 6 p.m. nonconference game against Manson-Northwest Webster on Thursday.