The goal is 20 wins.
With six games remaining and a 15-5 record, the Pequot Lakes Patriots are well within reach of that goal. But they'll need the continued production from senior guard Jordan Schommer to assure the goal is reached.
Schommer's 25 points in a 76-55 Section 7-2A victory over Greenway Feb. 8 ignited a three-game win streak for the Patriots.
"He's just a talented kid and he's gotten some good looks," said Pequot head coach Rich Spiczka. "We've been a little bit more up-tempo these last few games so that helps. He plays well in the halfcourt, too, but when he can control 90 feet that helps him, too. He can get some more open looks."
The big win during the streak came Monday, Feb. 11, when Schommer dropped 23 points on Mid-State Conference-leading Detroit Lakes leading to Pequot's 80-67 victory.
--- --- --- --- ---
- Year: Senior
- School: Pequot Lakes
- Sport: Basketball
- Position: Guard
- Highlights: Finished with 48 points in Pequot's last two wins
--- --- --- --- ---
"We've been pushing hard in transition and getting better looks than we have in past games," Schommer said. "We're not just settling for shots. We're getting good shots lately.
"With the faster pace, I'm used to playing like that and most of our opponents are used to playing as fast as we are so usually we get the step on them."
Schommer has led or been a co-leading scorer for Pequot in most of its games this year. He tallied 12 points in a 63-53 Section 7-2A loss to Esko Feb. 5.
"It starts with him, from the standpoint that he's our best, most reliable scorer," Spiczka said. "We run more things for him than we do anybody else. But he does a pretty good job of getting looks when we don't run stuff. Some kids have a hard time scoring if you don't run stuff for them, but Jordan can score without us running stuff for him."
Schommer's offensive philosophy is to attack the defense. He said if he sees an open opportunity he will attack the basket. If it leads to a layup or a dish out to a teammate he's happy either way.
"We obviously have a lot of different players that can score and that makes it harder for teams to scout us and they can't just lock down one player," Schommer said. "That frees everybody up on the court."
Pequot's third win was a 67-43 Mid-State Conference victory over Aitkin Thursday, Feb. 14. Schommer tallied 18 points to lead the way.
"He can create his own shot," Spiczka said. "He can knock it down just catching and shooting, but he's pretty quick. He can get by people. He can get to the rim. He has a good pull-up game. He's kind of got all facets.
"When he can get out and play the whole floor, and it fits our whole team, too, but he's hard to keep in front of you when you're set on defense. So then when we can get out and run and the defenses aren't set and the rotations aren't set he can really make you pay as far as getting to the basket. Teams have a hard time keeping him from getting downhill and to the bucket."
Through the team's first 19 games, Schommer is averaging 16.7 points per game. He's hitting 60 percent of his 2-point attempts and 41 percent from 3-point. He's also hitting 78 percent of his free throws to go with four assists and two steals per game.
That same full-court, up-tempo style of offense is exactly how Schommer wants to play defense, too.
"I guess, we just really like getting after people and getting in their face," Schommer said. "We like guarding people full court and making them work to get around us. Usually, we get quite a few steals off of that."
But Schommer knows his role is to be a consistent offensive threat for Pequot.
"I knew I needed to be really good offensively for our team," Schommer said. "Our team has always had good defense, but definitely offensively I knew I had to step up. For the team, we expected to do well. Our goal this year is to get 20 wins."
Schommer and the Patriots are five away.
Other notable performances
Basketball: Spencer Schaefer, Pillager, finished with 23 points against Wadena-Deer Creek.
Peter Schommer, Pierz, finished with 20 points, five rebounds and three assists against Eden Valley-Watkins.
Bereket Loer, Wadena-Deer Creek, finished with 25 points against Menahga.
Jonah Prokott, Pierz, finished with 22 points against Paynesville.
Wrestling: Jake Andres, Ross Boser, Carson Huls, Jacob Gotvald and Austin Dickmann, Pierz, all finished the week 4-0.
Adam Christopher, Nate Williams and Taylor Eigenheer, Crosby-Ironton, all finished the week 4-0.