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Evergreen Lutheran boys look to rebuild
"The Evergreen Lutheran Eagle boys basketball team made a marvelous run through the district and state tournaments last season before being stopped in the Class B title game.With a 57-40 victory over visiting Clallam Bay Monday night, the Eagles are off to a 4-1 start this season, but this certainly isnt the same team as last season.Evergreen Lutheran lost three starters and more than 80 percent of its offense to graduation. Theyre big shoes to fill and our league is just as tough as last year, said Evergreen senior Justin Schuessler, who scored a team-high 16 points Monday. Weve just got to keep playing for this year and not look back to last year.Evergreen Lutheran coach David Habeck is rebuilding around 6-foot-6 senior center Travis Stokes. Stokes had a tough night against Clallam Bay, fouling out in first half.We want to have a big inside presence with Travis, Habeck said.Other than Monday nights game, the Eagles offense has mostly come from the inside. Against Cedar Park Saturday, Evergreen Lutheran made just one outside shot.A good sign for the Eagles came Monday with the sinking of six 3-pointers.Weve been struggling putting points on the board, Habeck said. Our outside shooting has been very suspect.Ironically, it was Evergreen Lutherans outside shooting that lifted the Eagles to the victory over Clallam Bay. A pair of 3-pointers by junior guard Mile Sauer sandwiched around a laying by Ronshad Berry late in the third quarter broke open a tie game. By then end of the third quarter, Josh Marlow and Aaron Carr added a pair of inside shot to lift the Eagles ot a 43-32 lead. A 3-pointer, followed by a free throw from Schuessler gave Evergreen Lutheran its biggest league of the game at 51-33 with 5:45 remaining in the fourth quarter.Clallam Bay fell to 1-1. The Bruins have just nine practices in after several players were participating in the state football playoffs.Mike Lenza scored a game-high 18 points for the Bruins, but hit just 8-for-17 from the free throw line.Schuessler was the only Eagle in double figures. Habeck is counting on a fairly equal distribution of the scoring load as he had Monday. All 12 Eagles played, eight scored and six of them had six or more."