The Rhinelander High School boys' basketball team closed out their Great Northern Conference season on Thursday night at Mosinee. Junior guard Luke Spink led the Indians to an 83-62 win over the Hodags to finish the season 12-0 in the conference. Spink finished with a game-high of 38 points, which accounted to nearly half of Mosinee’s points.
Rhinelander stuck around for most of the first half, but every time they would make a big play on offense, the Indians had an answer. After Mosinee took an early 4-0 lead, RHS responded with eight unanswered points to take the lead. Junior Peyton Erickson and senior Junior Howard had triples on the run and junior Drake Martin scored inside.
But that lead would be short-lived as the Indians responded with a 21-8 run and never looked back. Spink sparked the run with 12 individual points which included three 15-foot jump shots, a triple, and a traditional three-point play.
The Hodags didn't back down though and would battle back with a 13-5 run to pull within one-point but that would be as close as they would get on the night. Howard started the run scoring on a drive and following that up with a steal and transition bucket. Sophomore Quinn Lamers add three free-throws and senior Bryce Schickert closed the run with seven points to get RHS within one at 29-30 with 2:13 left in the half.
Once again the Indians had an answer and would close the first half on an 11-2 run to take a 10-point lead at halftime. Eight of those points would be by Spink who scored another jumper at the free-throw line and followed that up with a pair of three-point plays in the final 30 seconds of the half, which were only scored 14.5 seconds apart. Mosinee would take a 41-31 lead at halftime and Spink led with 25 points at the break.
The Indians extended their lead to 14 early in the second half. Martin scored inside for Rhinelander and Howard added a pair of free throws to get the Hodags back within 10 at 40-50 but Mosinee put the game out of reach with a 27-6 run before taking out their starters for the final seven minutes. The Indians finished 12-0 in the GNC and 16-4 overall.
RHS had three players finish in double-digits led by Schickert with 13. Lamers recorded 12 points and Howard added 11 on the night.
After Spink scoring 38, Mosinee had two other players score double-digits. Sophomoe Cyle Kowalski finished with 17 points and senior Casey Kowalski charted 12 points.
Rhinelander fell to 9-12 overall and finished the GNC 6-6 and tied for fourth place with Lakeland in the conference. After the Indians at 12-0, Antigo and Medford both went 7-5. The Hodgas will host Shawano on Tuesday night in the WIAA regional quarterfinal. RHS beat the Hawks 68-60 in their opening game. Tip off it set for 7:00PM at the Jim Miazga Community Gymnasium.