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West edges East boys, 112-111

March 25, 2018
Thorn Compton - Central Iowa Press , Reinbeck Courier

REINBECK - While no one is going to argue there was a lot of defense played on the boys side of the NICL Senior All-Star game on Friday evening, there was some late-game intrigue in the matchup.

The West Division squad had built a comfortable lead midway through the second half, but the East battled back to bring it within a one-possession game in the final seconds. The East actually led with around 10 seconds left, but Gladbrook-Reinbeck's Caden Kickbush was fouled shooting a 3-pointer with less than two seconds on the clock and had a chance to win the game for his squad.

Kickbush had missed his four previous foul shots because of a choice to shoot them under-handed, or granny, style, and he said he was torn between sinking the shots normally or having a little more fun with the situation.

Article Photos

East Marshall senior Zaine Leedom (12) winds up for a dunk after a Tyler DeBondt assist in the dunk contest for the NICL Senior All-Star game on Friday.
Photo by Thorn Compton

"You know half the team wanted me to shoot granny but the other half wanted to just get the win, so I decided to go with the other half," Kickbush said with a large grin.

Kickbush sunk the first two free throws, then on the third he attempted to set up his posts for a dunk, but when the time ran down it was the West who walked away as the 112-111 victors.

Beau Coberley, who was one of four players representing West Marshall in the game, said ultimately what the guys were there to do was have a good time.

"Our main focus was just to make the game fun, yeah we wanted to win but we all love each other and it was so much fun to get out here with everyone," he said.

Fun was easily the best way to describe this game, as it featured some highlight-real dunks from the West side and some clutch 3-point shooting from the East to stay in the contest.

South Hardin senior Kevin Rewoldt finished with 26 points to lead the West and earn an MVP trophy from his squad, and he left his mark on the G-R gym too, as the rims will likely need to be tightened after the punishment he put on them.

Rewoldt said, though at times it seemed his teammates wanted to just set up the 6-foot-8 Tiger for another monster slam, there was actually quite a bit of offense in the game.

"I like that sometimes I got to shoot threes and stuff and we passed the ball a lot more than I thought we would," Rewoldt said.

All season, the players from the West slug it out on the court against each other, so East Marshall point guard Tyler DeBondt said it's nice to put all of that aside and get out here to play in a fun, no-pressure environment.

"This was the last time I will probably ever play a competitive basketball game like this, so competing against all these guys in conference play and then getting together and having fun with them was great," DeBondt said. "Winning was fun, we had to pull it out in the end, but it was just a fun experience."

Finishing second in scoring for the West was Zane Johnson for the Mustangs with 21 points, most of which also came from some high-flying action at the rim, while Zaine Leedom from East Marshall put in 15 and DeBondt and West Marshall's Alex Dickey each finished with nine.

The East was led by Kirk Drew from Wapsie Valley with 23 points, followed by Tannor Wulf from Hudson and Drew's teammate Carson Kerns with 14.

The most competitive part of the night actually came after the game, when the West all-stars faced off in an extremely entertaining dunk contest.

The smart money was on Rewoldt, given his size advantage, but both Johnson and Leedom had shown a strong dunking prowess throughout the season as well.

In the end it was Leedom who walked away as the dunk contest winner after throwing down two incredible slams, and after the showing he said he didn't necessarily think he could beat the South Hardin big man.

"Me and Kevin were giving each other crap, Sunday we came into practice and we were giving each other crap all day and all day today we were giving each other crap," Leedom said with a chuckle. "To be honest in the back of my mind I probably didn't think I would beat him, but I was able to pull out some pretty sick ones."

Rewoldt, who finished his final dunk by actually throwing down a basketball with each hand, said he thinks his dunks were great, but Leedom's were as well.

"His first dunk was pretty good, it was a close one but I will give it to him," Rewoldt said.

The game lived up to its billing as a fun place for the players to just let loose, and Kickbush said getting to finish off playing on his home court with these guys is a dream come true.

"It was pretty cool that they all go to come here, I've played with all of these guys my entire life so it's like playing with my brothers at this point," he said.

West 112, East 11

EAST (111) - Dylan McCombs 3 2-2 11, Tannor Wulf 5 1-1 14, Lane Marlow 1 0-0 2, Cameron O'Donnell 6 0-0 17, Carson Kerns 4 2-2 14, Koby Alpers 4 0-0 10, Kirk Drew 10 1-3 23, Austin Wittenburg 2 0-0 5, Cody Hoff 4 0-0 12, Alex Moore 1 0-0 2. TOTALS 40 6-8 111.

WEST (112) - John Hohnstein 1 0-0 3, Beau Coberley 4 0-0 8, Michael Doe 2 0-0 6, Alex Dickey 3 0-0 9, Zane Johnson 10 0-0 21, Zaine Leedom 7 0-0 15, Tyler DeBondt 3 0-0 9, Keven Rewoldt 13 0-0 26, Walker Thede 2 0-0 5, Matt Johannsen 1 0-0 2, Caden Kickbush 2 2-7 8, Joel Davis 0 0-0 0. TOTALS 48 2-7 112.

HalftimeEast 59-58. 3-Point GoalsEast 24 (O'Donnel 5, Kerns and Hoff 4, McCombs and Wulf 3, Alpers and Drew 2, Wittenburg), West 14 (Dickey and DeBondt 3, Doe and Kickbush 2, Hohnstein, Johnson, Leedom, Thede). Total FoulsEast 3, West 7. Fouled Outnone.



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