MAC Has Full Friday Slate for First Time on Friday Night

Minster's Jarod Schulze and the Wildcats go to Delphos to face St. John's while Marion Local's Nick Tangeman and the Flyers go to New Bremen on Friday in MAC action. (Photos by Brian Smith, Fred Kremer)
Staff Writer

It took more than a month, but the Midwest Athletic Conference will finally have a full Friday night slate this week.

All 10 teams will be in action on Friday night, as Minster and Coldwater will play their first MAC games of the season  (and then face off in a make-up game next Tuesday, too).

It was a good start for the league in the 2017 portion of the season. Eight of the 10 MAC teams have winning records as of Monday.  The MAC is 12-6 against the WBL and 7-0 against the NWCC while its match-ups with Shelby County League teams have been good ones. The SCAL leads the season series against the MAC 6-5 right now.

A look at the MAC’s Friday night slate as league play begins in earnest:

Minster at St. John’s
Minster was humbled a bit by a double-digit loss to Anna a couple weeks ago, but the Wildcats bounced back nicely with an impressive win over another SCAL top team, Russia. They followed that up with a game against Houston that saw them dish out 22 assists. Minster will face a St. John’s team that is 5-3 following a challenging out of conference schedule and a 48-30 loss to MAC frontrunner Versailles in the league opener a few weeks ago. St. John’s won last year’s meet at Minster 44-41 in a low-scoring affair.

It took until the calendar turned over into 2018 for Minster to make its Midwest Athletic Conference debut, but it’s finally here as the Wildcats are set to travel to Delphos to face St. John’s in their conference opener on Friday night. Minster, which picked up a pair of wins over Shelby County Athletic League squads last week, sits at 4-1 heading into their conference lid lifter.

Minster proved to be too much for a quality Russia team on Wednesday night in a 57-42 win and then overpowered Houston 80-44 on Friday.

Minster used a big second half to pull away from the Raiders last Wednesday. The Wildcats outscored Russia 33-16 after halftime. Isaac Schmiesing scored 14 points. Jarod Schulze had 13 points and eight rebounds. Mike Ketner added 13 points and three steals. Cody Frericks had nine points and eight rebounds. Jordan York led Russia with 12 points. The Raiders fell to 6-3 on the year.

Two night later, Minster put on an offensive clinic, earning assists on 22 of their 33 made baskets while the defense held Houston to 8-of-23 shooting inside the arc to run away from Houston on Friday. Isaac Schmiesing went 7-of-14 from the floor, including three treys and collected five rebounds for the Wildcats. Mike Ketner filled up the stat sheet from his guard spot with 11 points, six rebounds and four assists.  Jarod Schulze was 6-for-10 from the floor and scored 14 points. Cody Frericks had 11 points and dished out five assists to go with a game-high 12 rebounds. Jack Heitbrink and Jared Huelsman each had four assists as Minster.  Howie Ludwig scored 15 points for Houston, which fell to 1-7.

Ft. Recovery at St. Henry
Fort Recovery will get back into MAC play after what will have been a 12-day layoff since its last game. They’ll hope they’re not too rusty considering they’re facing a St. Henry team that was impressive in winning the holiday tournament with wins over Celina and Coldwaterby comfortable margins. Fort Recovery beat St. Henry twice last year, including a tournament win at Wapakoneta.

Marion Local at New Bremen
Marion Local suffered a pair of losses to Shawnee and Coldwater during the holiday season before perking up with a 49-31 win over Celina last Saturday. The Flyers will now face a New Bremen squad that picked up its second win of the season against Indian Lake. Marion Local has won five straight games over the Cardinals.

Parkway at Versailles
Versailles played its first close game of the season last Wednesday but emerged with a 67-65 win over Anna and followed that up with a 31-point drubbing of Miami East. The Tigers, led by Justin Ahrens’ 20 points in that victory, are now 8-0.

New Knoxville at Coldwater
New Knoxville got off to a good league start back on Dec. 15 with a win over Parkway. Now the Rangers are hoping to start MAC play at 2-0 for the first time since the 2008-2009 season. Coldwater is opening MAC play after knocking off Marion Local and lsoing to St. Henry in its holiday tourney.

In the Shelby County Athletic League: Unbeaten Fort Loramie hosts Russia, Anna goes to Fairlawn and Jackson Center hits the road to play at Houston.