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Taylorville wins out; Places 5th in 2021 Holiday Tournament

Lucas Domonousky Breeze-Courier

Sports Writer TAYLORVILLE — The Tornadoes played games four and five on Wednesday, December 29th. Taking on the likes of Rantoul and Rochester. The home court defending Tornadoes beat the Eagles in blowout fashion and, once again, defeated the Rockets.

Hungry for a win, the Tornadoes came flying out the gate on Wednesday morning. Just in the first three quarters Taylorville outscored the Eagles 46-16. Leading scorer for Taylorville was the man in the middle, Bryce Friedrich, with 18 but every Tornado wanted in on the fun. Senior Ryan Johnson added 2 to the total and same story with freshman, Baron Odam, also with 2 points.

Hot off their blowout win against the Eagles, Taylorville decided to take it right to their next victim. For their fifth and final game of the Holiday Tournament the Tornadoes faced off against non-conference rival from up the street, the Rochester Rockets.

Senior Forward, Kamren Heimsness showed up right away and scored 12 quick points. The Rockets dared him to shoot so he did exactly that. Heimsness ended his game with 27 points total. Taylorville maintained and set the pace all game long. Rochester showed signs of catching up but never could quite play on the level of the home team.

Freshman guard, Drake Howard, looks more and more comfortable each time his name is called. He totaled 7 points and played fantastic defense. Speaking of defense it would be a crime not to mention two-way seniors Dylan Brown and Luke Markwell. Both played stellar D and earned a combined 2 points and 10 rebounds.

Try as they may to shut down senior forward Friedrich but like Coach Brown said “Bryce is gonna do Bryce things no matter what.” He may not have had his usual double digit outing in the points department, 6, but he was dominant on the glass snagging 11 rebounds and too played impeccable defense. Junior,

Will Bitschenauer rounded out scoring shooting a three and earned himself 3 points.

“Im proud of our guy’s overall for the tournament,” said an excited Head Coach Ryan Brown “We fight and compete so hard play good defense just about every minute of the game. I just love this team.”

This was the first game of the season Taylorville made more three-point, 8, than two point field goals, 6. Not what Taylorville is used to seeing but it was a way to get the job done. The Tornadoes were in control the whole game never relinquishing hold over the Rockets. They notched a 45-41 victory and sealed 5th place in the 2021 Holiday Tournament. Taylorville went 2-3 through the three day duration.

The teams next game will be January 8th against the Jersey Panthers. That game will be at home.

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