By PATRICK SLACK
Trailing by 15 points five minutes into the second half, Royalton battled all the way back to take a two-point lead at Swanville, Feb. 14.
However, the Bulldogs regrouped down the stretch, utilizing an 18-of-24 night from the free-throw line to come away with a 61-53 victory.
Four players reached double figures to lead a balanced effort offensively for Swanville, including senior Austin Mollner (14), sophomore Jordan Sales (13) and seniors Colten Kruzel (12) and Tren Dinius (11).
Senior Justin Opatz picked up 19 points and senior Matt Silbernick recorded 10 points and nine rebounds to lead Royalton, with seniors Luke Wentland and Brad Woidyla each contributing seven.
Upsala dominates with offense and defense to remain perfect
Fourth-ranked Upsala won three more games to improve to 21-0 and close in on a potential perfect regular season, starting with a 79-27 shellacking of visiting Osakis, Feb. 14.
Ten players scored for the Cardinals on the night, led by senior Garrett Wolf with 16 and senior Avery Smieja and junior Christian Pekarek with 12 apiece.
Senior Eric Frieler followed with nine points and junior Dylan Zimmerman recorded seven points and a team-high eight rebounds.
Upsala limited the Silverstreaks to 10 points in each half.
Bertha-Hewitt gave Upsala a tough battle, but not enough to knock off the Cardinals in a 69-60 triumph, Feb. 16.
Pekarek shot 10-of-18 from the field to net 31 points while also distributing four assists.
Zimmerman followed with 11 points and Wolf picked up eight points, nine rebounds and five assists.
The Cardinals were back in dominant form in a 93-47 trouncing at Eagle Valley, Monday, sparked by five players in double figures.
Pekarek had 23 points to lead Upsala, followed by Zimmerman (15), Smieja (14), Eric Frieler (10) and senior Nick Frieler (10).
Senior Matt Abeler drained a trio of threes to finish with nine points and senior Andy Nelson and Wolf each chipped in six.
Sixth-ranked Browerville pulls away from Royals
An eight-point run to close the first half and nine threes sent sixth-ranked Browerville on its way to a 58-41 win over host Royalton, Monday.
Silbernick posted 22 points and seven rebounds and senior Ethan Zimny drained 11 points to pace Royalton.
LPGE takes down Bulldogs
Typically defensive-minded Long Prairie-Grey Eagle (LPGE) turned in its highest offensive output of the season to top visiting Swanville 88-58 in Prairie Conference action, Monday.