LINGLE – The Lingle-Fort Laramie Doggers picked up a pair of dominating victories over the weekend to improve to 6-2 on the season.
On Friday, the Doggers traveled to Crawford, Neb. and knocked off the Rams, 47-25 before opening conference play with a 60-32 win over the Guernsey-Sunrise Vikings on Saturday.
Against the Rams, L-FL jumped out to a 14-8 first-quarter lead.
“Yesterday at Crawford, like the game (Saturday), we came out with an attitude that we could compete with these people,” L-FL assistant coach Mark Perkins said. “We played, like (Saturday), with confidence. We played aggressively. We played smart.”
The Doggers came out in a full-court press, forcing Crawford to use a timeout in the first 30 seconds of the game.
However, it was in the third quarter which the Doggers did most of the damage.
In the quarter, L-FL outscored Crawford, 15-4, extending its lead to 35-15 heading into the final quarter.
“We showed we are consistent on the inside shooting and we have a pretty consistent outside game,” Perkins said.
The Doggers shot 33 percent while holding Crawford to 18 percent in the win.
Senior Ty Mueller led L-FL with 15 points, and junior Caeden Riley added 12. Junior Bailey Powell grabbed a team-high eight rebounds.
The next day, the Doggers came out and set the tone early, racing out to a 15-3 lead in the first quarter.
“We were very aggressive,” Perkins said. “We had several fast breaks right away.”
It was near the midway point in the opening frame before Guernsey finally got on the scoreboard.
Perkins was also pleased with the team’s ability to limit turnovers in the first half.
“Last year that was a real nemesis for us,” he said. “There were games last year where we had more turnovers than points.”
The L-FL lead continued to grow, limiting Guernsey-Sunrise to only two field goals.
With a 34-7 lead at the half, it allowed the Dogger coaching staff to play much of the junior varsity squad over the final 16 minutes of the contest.
“Most of the kids at the end were my JV kids. It’s like a proud papa,” Perkins said. “Zach Lemman has worked really hard on his free throws. He’s worked really hard on his shots underneath the basket. Nate Gutierrez is athletic. He’s playing disciplined ball. Hunter Hatch is playing very disciplined ball. We were able to be effective late in the game. I’m proud of them for stepping up and finishing the game strong.”
In all, 10 Doggers cracked the scoring column with Riley leading the way with 10 points, while sophomore Cooper Hill adding 10.
“The coaches work really hard on fast breaks,” Perkins said. “(Head coach Steve Zimmerman) has worked with Cooper Hill to break immediately. It really came to fruition tonight. Cooper did a really nice job of getting down the floor and taking his man to the hole and making something happen.”
The Doggers (6-2) will play cross-county rival Southeast (2-6) at 7:30 p.m. on the campus of Eastern Wyoming College’s Verl Petsch Jr. Activities Center.