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Boys basketball: Irish shooters catch fire

Balanced scoring and hot shooting was a recipe for success last week for the Rosemount boys basketball team.

The Irish shot 52 percent from the floor last Thursday night and got the stops they needed to score a 66-62 win on the road at Benilde-St. Margaret’s. A night later, the team connected on 56 percent of its shots in defeating Bloomington Jefferson 60-53 in its South Suburban Conference opener at Irish Gym.

For the week, the 4-1 Irish shot 62 percent from two-point range, 46 percent from beyond the arc and 79 percent from the free-throw line.

“We have been shooting great from the free-throw line and doing a nice job of working for the open shot and making the extra pass,” Rosemount coach Bryan Schnettler said. “Our team play has been the reason that we are off to a good start.”

Against Benilde, the Irish put four players in double figures while leading from start to finish. Logan Halvorson and Matt Stephenson each tallied 17 points, with Halvorson splashing three three-pointers and Stephenson providing five assists and seven rebounds.

Cole Northwick added three long-range shots of his own en route to 15 points and Kyle Kaupa came through with his best game of the season, scoring 10 points, grabbing seven rebounds and drilling a pair of threes.

Point guard Garrett Goetz dished out a team-high eight assists.

“Balanced scoring on offense helped us big in this one,” Schnettler said.

The Irish scored a season-low 60 points against Jefferson, but were still efficient on the offensive end, making 8 of 14 three-pointers and shooting 56 percent overall.

Goetz led the way with 14 points and six assists. Stephenson joined him in double figures with 12 points and also hauled in five rebounds.

Halvorson made three three-pointers for all nine of his points and Kaupa added nine points on perfect 4-for-4 shooting.

Defensively, the Irish held the previously unbeaten Jaguars to a season-low 53 points.

“Our defense and communication was great in this one,” Schnettler said.

The Irish traveled to Prior Lake on Tuesday and are back at Irish Gym tomorrow night against Lakeville South.