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East Ridge boys basketball: Raptors down Bears to improve to 6-0 in SEC

East Ridge senior guard Jake Knupp scored a career-high 31 points to help the Raptors top White Bear Lake 54-45 on Friday, Jan. 10. The win was East Ridge’s 10th straight. (Bulletin photo by Patrick Johnson)

Though shorthanded, the East Ridge boys basketball team persevered to earn a 54-45 Suburban East Conference win over White Bear Lake on Friday, Jan. 10, at East Ridge High School.

East Ridge senior guard Jake Knupp scored a career-high 31 points to help the Raptors (11-2; 6-0 SEC) top the Bears (4-8; 2-4 SEC). The win was East Ridge’s 10th straight.

Despite missing three starters in Brian Ishola, Ryan Mathis and Ryan Keenan, East Ridge opened up a 30-22 lead in the game then outscored White Bear Lake 24-23 to hold on to the win.

East Ridge head coach Paul Virgin said staunch team defense and rebounding led the Raptors to the win. White Bear Lake had only three offensive rebounds and shot 30 percent from the floor in the game.

“I am so pleased with our team defense and rebounding,” Virgin said. “Parker Moquist and Seth Green just played great on the defensive end and had many huge rebounds. Sid Tomes did an excellent job holding their leading scorer to 11 points. Sid is a lockdown defender.”

East Ridge shot just 34 percent from the field in the game, but made 21 of 27 free throws, including going 10-for-13 from the charity stripe in the game’s final five minutes.

“It is so exciting to see Freddie Gillespie, Bobby Remke, Bobby Franks and Colin Masgai step up with huge games while the seniors are hurt,” Virgin said. “Their rebounding and defense were varsity caliber and they continue to get better each week.”

East Ridge played Cretin-Derham Hall (10-3; 6-1 SEC) on Tuesday, after the Bulletin went to press. Next, the Raptors host Stillwater (5-7; 2-5 SEC) on Friday at The Perch in Woodbury.

“Cretin and Stillwater will be great tests for us,” Virgin said. “I hope we all continue to get better and getting healthy would be nice too.”

—Patrick Johnson

Patrick Johnson
Patrick Johnson has been the South Washington County Bulletin’s sports editor since 2008. He reports on and oversees coverage of high school and amateur sports in south Washington County and Woodbury. Prior to joining the Bulletin, Johnson worked for other Twin Cities suburban newspapers. He is a University of Minnesota graduate.
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