No. 4 Battle Lake wins 11th straight in boys basketball
MOORHEAD - So many VanErps, so little time. Actually, time wouldn't have helped Pelican Rapids in Battle Lake's 67-34 win over the Vikings at Memorial Auditorium on Saturday in Minnesota boys basketball action. Not with brothers Petric VanErp and...
MOORHEAD – So many VanErps, so little time.
Actually, time wouldn’t have helped Pelican Rapids in Battle Lake’s 67-34 win over the Vikings at Memorial Auditorium on Saturday in Minnesota boys basketball action.
Not with brothers Petric VanErp and Eric VanErp on the floor with their cousin Andrew VanErp. The VanErps scored 48 of Battle Lake’s 67 points on Saturday.
As for who is the best VanErp…
“I guess that depends on the night,” Petric VanErp said.
Saturday, it was Eric VanErp, as the sophomore dropped a career-high 25 points, hauled in five rebounds and added two blocks for Minnesota Class 1A’s No. 4-ranked Battlers.
Petric VanErp wasn’t too far behind with 13 points, seven rebounds and three blocks, while Andrew VanErp added 10 points.
As if the family tree needed more branches, the VanErps stepped up with their cousin and Battle Lake’s leading scorer, Tony Ukkelberg, missing his second straight game with the flu.
“If one goes down the next man has to step up,” Battle Lake coach Dan Peterka said. “We got to stay together as a group and we’ve done that. We’ve done a good job of keeping things together. We have good balance, but we’d really like to get him back.”
Ukkelberg averages 17 points, six rebounds and five assists a game for Battle Lake, yet, the Battlers defeated a 13-5 Parkers Prairie team by 25 on Thursday and Pelican Rapids by 33 on Saturday without him.
“We started out pretty sluggish, but we came out in the second half knowing what we wanted to do, getting in the flow of our offense and just playing all around better,” Eric VanErp said. “We’re hoping to make it pretty far, but we have to play every game like we’re the underdog.”
Underdogs aren’t 19-1. They certainly don’t beat teams by an average of 39 points outside of a seven-point loss to No. 3-ranked Maranatha Academy.
Underdogs certainly don’t turn a 14-14 game into a 46-19 game in a matter of minutes as Battle Lake did Saturday to Pelican Rapids.
The last time Battle Lake played at Memorial Auditorium they entered ranked No. 2 and the only remaining undefeated boys basketball team in the state. They left 27-1 and one win away from a trip to the state tournament, losing to an underdog.
Those memories are behind Battle Lake.
“Didn’t really think about it,” Peterka said. “This is a new season with a new team. We’re moving forward with what we have.”
Half: B 27, P 17
P: Honrud 10, Gorton 14, Mackner 2, Knorr 4, Hensch 2, Erickson 2.
B: A. VanErp 10, P. VanErp 13, E. VanErp 25, Trosdahl 10, Rogness 6, Bradsteen 1, Gill 2.