Mora came to Rush City last Thursday and downed the Tiger boys basketball team 69-53 in their last regular season game.
“Mora is currently ranked No. 8 in the state according to the QRF (quality results formula), which is what they use to rank teams for playoffs,” said coach Jeremy Albright. “They will also finish the regular season as the No. 1 seed in our section. So we knew that it would be one of our toughest matchups of the season.”
“I told the kids before the game that they got a gift — a ‘practice playoff game.’ We had a good crowd, the pep band was playing. Mora fans were yelling at our kids. It was a playoff atmosphere. We got off to a really good start. We hit some shots and played good defense.
“The biggest thing that hurt us versus Mora was foul trouble. We had several kids in the first half with at least two fouls, and some of them had three. All of the foul calls were legit. We spent too much time reaching instead of playing good position defense with our feet.
“Even with the foul trouble, we took a one point lead into the locker room (31-30).
“The story in the second half was the same as the first: foul trouble. With about 10 minutes left in the game we were up 43-39, but then we had three starters on the bench for a while with four fouls. That is when Mora started to make their run. Even with those kids back in the ball game they couldn’t be as aggressive as they normally would.
“Credit Mora for making the plays they needed to make in the second half. They have a good ball club. Definitely the best Mora basketball team since I’ve been head coach.
“I don’t know if I’ve ever had a team work that hard in a game like we did against Mora. I’m really proud of their effort.
“We move on to the Section 7AA playoffs. We are hoping all of the Tiger fans can make the trip over to watch our game and cheer us on. The boys will work hard and make your trip worthwhile.”
The Rush City boys basketball team finished the regular season third in the Great River Conference with a 11-5 conference record and now has a 13-9 overall record. The No. 1-6 section seeded Tigers will travel to Braham to face the No. 1-3 section seeded Bombers (23-2 record) in the first round of Section 7AA playoffs at 7 p.m. Wednesday, March 6.