Rebels bounce back from loss, stop Ten Sleep to move to 2-2 in league play

Nathan Oster

The Riverside Rebels lost to Burlington but defeated Ten Sleep to reach the midpoint of the Class 1A Northwest Conference schedule with a 2-2 record.
Coach Scott Winters said he saw encouraging signs in his team’s 50-36 loss to Burlington and 48-35 win over Ten Sleep.
“We had a really good start (in Burlington),” said Winters, whose team led 16-11 after one.  He attributed its success to execution on the offensive end and some nice defensive stops, adding “We shot the ball well and played within the rhythm of the game.”
But the momentum shifted in the second quarter.
“They changed how they were defending our screens and that messed up the rhythm a little bit and we tried to do too much individually and shots weren’t falling like they were earlier,” he said. “I felt like frustration started to creep in for some of our guys and they didn’t get back on defense the way we needed to to stop their transition baskets.”
The Huskies outscored the Rebels 15-4 in the second to take a 26-20 lead and never looked back, limiting Riverside to single-digit scoring in the third and fourth quarters en route to the 14-point win.
“Despite the frustration the boys continued to compete and work hard and I was proud of them for never giving up,” said Winters. “They have improved a lot in having a positive attitude and not dwelling on the negative.
Hayden Paxton was the only Riverside player in double digits with 10.  Ryder Kozisek and Avery Clifford added nine and eight, respectively.
A matchup on their home court against Ten Sleep provided a get-right opportunity for the Rebels, who took full advantage, winning by 13 points.
Despite being “physically and emotionally drained” from their effort the night before in Burlington, the Rebels outscored the Pioneers in every quarter
“We did a pretty good job defensively, but we weren’t disciplined in not reaching in and we had several guys get in foul trouble,” said Winters. “Josh (Wildman) was able to get some offense going for us with his drives and outside shots early on and Avery (Clifford) had a big game for us rebounding and getting some baskets.
“Gavyn (Cervantes) doesn’t normally get a ton of varsity minutes, but he came ready to play and gave us an offensive spark that we needed.”
Winters and his team will get a respite from conference play, with home games on tap today (Thursday, Feb. 1) against Greybull and Friday against Shoshoni before heading over the mountain Saturday for a clash with Big Horn.
All three of this week’s opponents are 2A teams and Winters said he hopes his team views them as opportunities to improve before the most crucial stretch of the season.
“It’s been good to play all of the teams in our conference and see where we are at and know that we can compete with everybody in our conference,” he said. “We are 2-2 in conference play, but both of our losses were winnable games so we are optimistic that we can have a strong second half of conference play.”

Burlington 11 15 13 11 — 50
Riverside       16   4   7   9 — 36
RIVERSIDE — Josh Wildman 1-7  2-2 4, Hyson Hill 0-5 0-2 0, Hayden Paxton 5-12 0-0 10, Avery Clifford 3-5 2-4 8, Wyatt Daly-Patterson 2-4 0-2 5, Ryder Kozisek 3-8 1-2 9.  Totals 14-of-41 5-of-12 36.
3-POINT GOALS — Kozisek 2, Patterson.  REBOUNDS — Riverside 21 (Paxton 9).  STEALS — Riverside 9 (Paxton 4).  TURNOVERS – Riverside 13.

Ten Sleep      8   3   9 15 — 35
Riverside    11 11 14 12 — 48
RIVERSIDE — Wildman 5-18 2-2 15, Hills 0-6 0-0 0, Paxton 5-15 0-0 10, Gavyn Cervantes 3-5 0-0 8, Clifford 4-8 0-2 9, Daly-Patterson 2-3 0-0 4, Kozisek 1-6 0-2 2.  Totals 20-of-61 2-of-6 48.
3-POINT GOALS — Wildman 3, Cervantes 2, Daly-Patterson.  REBOUNDS — Riverside 33 (Clifford 14).  STEALS — Riverside 8 (Wildman 3).  ASSISTS  — Riverside 8 (Wildman 3).  TURNOVERS — Riverside 12.