Urged to be more aggressive with offensive rebounds in recent games, Freeburg’s Quinn Haug made the Midgets’ coaching staff look great Tuesday.
Haug grabbed the rebound of a missed shot by Bryce Rutledge and hit a short put-back shot with 3.8 seconds remaining, lifting Freeburg to a thrilling 42-41 basketball victory over the Waterloo Bulldogs.
Haug, a 5-foot-11 junior, finished with a team-high 17 points and 10 rebounds, while Parker Weiss added seven points in the win. Waterloo’s Ben Huels missed a running scoop shot just ahead of the buzzer as the Midgets held on.
“We’ve been telling them the last few games that you need to be more aggressive on the offensive boards, (he) and Alex Mack both,” Freeburg coach Matt Laur said after his team improved to 5-1. “Tonight they both did a fantastic job on the offensive glass. Those offensive rebounds (Haug) got won that ballgame for us. He didn’t quit. He was just relentless in there.”
Freeburg led 15-6 after one quarter, but trailed Waterloo (1-5) 24-22 at halftime and 33-28 after three quarters. The Midgets hit only four of 18 shots during the middle two periods.
“You’ve just got to keep working, follow coach’s game plan and attack the offensive boards,” Haug said. “That’s how we came out on top. We got in a little slump, but we had to dig through it, play some defense and then we came out on top.”
After a shot by Griffin Lenhardt gave Waterloo a 41-40 lead, the Midgets set up for a final shot. They ended up getting several as Zach Muir and Rutledge missed their attempts before Haug banged his way inside for the rebound and hit the game-winner.
“I thought Quinn, being an undersized big guy, did a great job of just attacking down there,” said Laur, whose team’s only loss is to Gibault “He did a great job on the offensive glass. Our guys didn’t give up and that’s kind of the M.O. of this team.
“They’ve kind of been counted out and haven’t been given a fair shake necessarily at times — and they just keep scratching and clawing. We never gave up.”
Waterloo got 17 points from Ross Schrader, 10 from Huels and nine from Lenhardt.
Waterloo went on runs of 7-0 and 11-2 in the second quarter as Schrader scored 10 of his 12 first-half points during that span. The Bulldogs took their first lead of the night on a three-point play by Huels and led 24-22 at halftime.
“That’s a good ball club,” Laur said. “Waterloo’s got some really good players. For us to stick with it and keep fighting to literally the last second, I’ve got to give it up to my guys.”