NEW ULM - Minnesota Valley Lutheran senior Chad Lease scored 20 of his 21 points in the first half to lead the team to a 68-51 victory against Cleveland in the first round of the Section 2A North Subsection playoffs.
"Everything was working tonight, but it is my teammates who create for me, so hats off to them," Lease said.
Lease scored the first five points to help the Chargers jump out to an early lead on Saturday, and within 3 1/2 minutes Lease had already scored 10 points.
Staff photo by Steve Muscatello
Minnesota Valley Lutheran’s Jacob Hoffman (23) takes a layup as Spencer Lynch of Cleveland looks on during the first half of their Section 2A North Subsection playoff game Saturday at MVL.
For more photos of this event go to cu.nujournal.com
The Chargers started the game on a 10-2 run, and they were able to extend their lead to double digits early in the game and never let Cleveland get close enough to threaten them.
MVL used its speed to its advantage as it scored multiple times on fast-break opportunities.
"Our fast breaking was really a key point in our jumping out to an early lead tonight," Lease said.
Heading into halftime, MVL had a lead of 48-30.
Wheile offense highlighted the first half, defense highlighted the second half with MVL scoring only 20 points and Cleveland scoring 21.
Even though its offense was not clicking quite as well, the Chargers' defense ensured that its lead was never in jeopardy.
"We came out a little slow in the second half, but we picked it up and were able to hold on to the win and that is what matters," Lease said.
Lease's 21 points led all scorers and sophomore Jacob Hoffman added 11 points for MVL.
Senior Nick Dewanz, as always, was a physical presence inside for the Chargers, leading them with 14 rebounds.
MVL (12-13, 12-6 Tomahawk) advances to take on No. 3-seeded Sleepy Eye St. Mary's team in second round Section 2A North Subsection action on Tuesday.
"We had confidence coming into the playoffs, and this just builds more for us going into Tuesday," Lease said.