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Braves fall to Redmen

MARQUETTE — The Gladstone Braves boy’s basketball team (3-2) took a 66-51 loss Saturday against the Marquette Redmen (4-1) in Marquette.

“We started fine,” said Gladstone coach Mike Cretens. “(But) our biggest problem all night was our defense. I don’t know if it was tired legs from the night before or a lack of effort … but our defensive end was not there at all Saturday.”

Cretens mentions the team’s low total rebounds as evidence of the poor defensive showing.

“We had a total of 19 rebounds after having 45 the night before,” he said. “I’m hoping it was just tired legs and not lack of effort. But there was something lacking Saturday.”

The Braves, as Cretens said, began the game strong. They put up 19 points in the first quarter to hold the lead 19-17 over the Redmen. From there, though, Marquette hit their stride, taking over in the second and never looking back.

The game was the third in five days for Gladstone, but that is nothing compared to what is ahead, said Cretens.

“(It) doesn’t get easier. We play five games in the next eight days,” he said. “We have Westwood Monday (today), Kingsford Thursday, Esky Friday, Iron Mountain Monday (2/31) and Marquette Tuesday (3/2).

“It’s going to be crazy. We have to be ready and give it everything we got every time we are on that court. Even when we don’t have it.”

To keep the Gladstone boys fresh heading into the stretch, Cretens ran a toned-down practice Sunday. It featured walkthroughs, film, some shooting around and a team meal.

As is customary for Cretens, he capped his thoughts off as he does after every game, “Go Braves!”

The Braves head to Westwood today to take on the Patriots.

Gladstone 19 14 6 12 — 51

Marquette 17 22 20 7 — 66

Gladstone — Ballard 19, Castor 15, Hughes 6, Potier 4, Downey 3, Hansen 2, Bernson 2; F: 11; FT: 11-15; Fouled out: None; 3-point field goals: Ballard 3, Downey, Hughes, Castor.

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