Watertown edged Oregon 72-69 in the Badger South Conference opener for both teams Saturday, Dec. 7, at Oregon High School.
The Panthers were coming off a 73-63 home win over Beaver Dam on Tuesday, Dec. 3.
Watertown 72, Oregon 69
Erik Victorson poured in a game-high 26 points, but the Goslings held off the Panthers.
Oregon (2-1, 0-1 Badger South) trailed 31-24 at halftime.
Victorson also had six rebounds and five assists. Brandon Kerns added 13 points and three assists.
Ryne Panzer stuffed the stat sheet with 11 points, seven rebounds, three assists and three steals. Adam Yates helped with seven points, eight rebounds, four assists and two steals.
Watertown had four players in double figures, led by Cade Oiler’s 18 points. Kory Stas added 16 points, Nathan Gapinski had 11 and Deon Nailing had 10. Payton Foltz chipped in nine points for the Goslings.
Oregon 73, Beaver Dam 63
The Panthers ran their offense with ruthless efficiency and held the Golden Beavers in check defensively in the first half of the Badger Conference crossover game.
Oregon led 40-27 at halftime, but struggled offensively in the second half when the Beavers switched things up defensively.
“They went to a zone in the second half and that really slowed us down,” Oregon coach Chris Siebert said. “Our offense is better when we get paint touches. We knew we had the advantage inside.”
Beaver Dam outscored the Panthers 20-9 to begin the second half. Alex Soto and Colton Fakes drilled back-to-back 3-pointers to cut Oregon’s lead to 44-40. Broden Boschert then converted a three-point play to trim it to 49-47.
The Panthers regained control with a 7-0 run. Panzer connected on a 3 from the right wing, Yates corralled a long offensive rebound and whipped a pass down low to Ryan McCorkle for a layup, and Yates found McCorkle for a layup on the next possession.
“I felt like I had more of an impact passing the ball around,” Yates said. “I was open at the high post every time, and Ryan McCorkle and Matt Kissling were wide open down low.”
Yates and Victorson put the game away with a 10-0 run by themselves. Victorson made three free throws and a driving layup, while Yates connected on a post bucket and a 3 from the left wing to make it 66-49 with 3:45 left.
“They switched every screen, so our plan was to slip those and get easy buckets,” said Victorson, who finished with a team-high 17 points. “We just had to keep the ball moving against the zone to get good shots.”
Oregon used a pair of mini-runs to establish a lead early in the game.
Victorson drilled a 3 from the left wing, Yates made a layup and Bryce Kerns had a post bucket in a 7-2 stretch that put the Panthers up 11-6. Panzer connected on a pair of floaters, Bryce Kerns made a layup in transition, and Brandon Kerns split a pair of free throws in a 7-0 stretch that put Oregon up 18-10.
Victorson made another 3 from the left wing to push the Panthers’ lead to 31-19 with less than four minutes left before intermission.
“In the first half, our guys looked good. That was fun to watch,” Siebert said. “They played with good energy and really competed.”
Oregon ended the first half on a 7-3 run. Yates had a putback off his own miss, Ben Statz made a transition layup, and Brandon Kerns canned a 3 from the right corner.
Yates finished with 15 points, and Brandon Kerns cracked double figures with 10 points. Panzer and McCorkle added nine points apiece. Statz chipped in six points off the bench.
Beaver Dam shot 80% (20-for-25) from the free-throw line. Nate Abel poured in a game-high 25 points, and Soto had 16 points.