RIVERTON – The Tigers started strong but a hot-shooting Riverton Wolverine squad came back to take the win Thursday in Riverton, 72-58.
The two teams played four times last year with Rock Springs beating the Wolverines in the Consolation bracket of the state tournament in the last meeting. This year, the two teams will not face each other as many times as Riverton moved down to 3A.
Rock Springs looked sharp early as Kelby Kramer had the Tigers out to an early lead. The Tigers jumped up as many as ten but a strong push by Riverton had the lead down to four after one, 18-14.
Nick McMurtrey scored to start the second but the Wolverines continued to run. Riverton would even the game at 26 and three-point shooting would vault them into the lead. At the break, it was Riverton with the nine-point advantage, 36-27. Kramer led the way with nine points in the first while Trevor Hautala and McMurtrey finished with five each.
Buckets by Hautala and Kramer to start the third quarter were answered as Riverton maintained the 11-point lead. Hautala continued to push the ball and a three-point play the old fashion way cut the Riverton lead to single digits. The Tigers continued to push the ball and a bucket by McMurtrey at the end of the third had the Tigers within seven, 49-42.
Riverton opened the fourth on fire and quickly jumped back up by double digits. A tired Tiger team struggled as the Wolverines continued to push the ball. Despite buckets by Kael Mikkelsen and Hautala, Riverton ended up outscoring the Tigers 23-16 in the final quarter to take the win, 72-58.
Trevor Hautala led the way for Rock Springs with 20 points in the game. Kramer finished with 15 points while McMurtrey added 12.
The Tigers return to action on Friday as they continue the Bill Strannigan Tournament in Riverton. They face the fourth-ranked Sheridan Broncs at 3 p.m.
Rock Springs High School
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