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Mooseheart senior Makur Puou goes up for a reverse layup to score 2 of his 25 points in his team's 43-point victory over Harvest Christian.
Mooseheart junior Hameed Odunewu (left) drives to the basket past Harvest Christian's Noah Cox. Odunewu scored 18 points as the Ramblers improved to 6-2 for the season.
MOOSEHEART, IL Dec. 17 – For its final act of the fall semester, Mooseheart's boys basketball team put on an scoring show that left its fans something to hold onto for the coming three non-competitive weeks.
The Ramblers ran, jumped, dunked and scored freely against visiting Harvest Christian in a comprehensive 96-53 victory.
When final exams conclude on Friday, most of Mooseheart's students return home. The Ramblers will not compete again until Jan. 7, when they play Gage Park at Chicago's United Center.
"It's always a tough time of the year," Mooseheart coach Ron Ahrens said. "But it's way more important for our kids to get back with their families. I will never say anything against that. We're lucky. We come back and we play our first game at the United Center. Who doesn't want to play well at the United Center?"
Against Harvest Christian, Mooseheart was never troubled. The Ramblers raced to a 13-2 lead and the margin never dropped into single digits. When Harvest Christian surged somewhat in the second quarter, Mooseheart responded with an eight-point run to take the lead to 41-14.
In that second quarter, Mooseheart outscored the Lions 32-19 – keyed by 12 points by junior Hameed Odunewu.
"He's had three or four really good games for us since Thanksgiving," Ahrens said. "He's probably playing just as well as anyone on the team right now."
High scoring honors went to senior Mangisto Deng, who scored 30 points. Fellow senior Makur Puou added 25 points and that duo joined Odunewu as Mooseheart's double-digit scorers for the evening.
"We played four good quarters," Ahrens said. "You know what I'm finding is that it's not all the Manny (Deng) and Mac (Puou) show. You have (Odunewu) come in and he's playing extremely well for us. Now we have a triple threat. And Freddie (Okito) is handling the ball better for us, our sophomore guard. We have four guys playing at that high level. Then you put the 7-1 kid (Akim Nyang) in the middle and he just keeps his hands up and that's tough."
Deng scored 20 points in the first half as the Ramblers built a 52-26 lead.
"I was hot and I was shooting the ball and they just kept feeding me the ball, so 'thanks,'" Deng said.
After a 1-2 opening weekend at the Canton Thanksgiving Tournament, Mooseheart had surged to finish the fall semester 6-2.
"That Thanksgiving tournament was tough on us," Ahrens said. "We've rebounded and played really good basketball since then. It was probably a good learning lesson for us, that we can't just show up and think we're going to win games."
Harvest Christian 7 19 15 12 - 53
Mooseheart 21 31 24 20 - 96
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