Union Controls Raiders, 65-51

Union's Brandon Ford take a shot during the Wildcats' 65-51 win over North County.

Bill Battle

Entering the final week of the regular season, the Union basketball Wildcats picked up a huge victory Tuesday over North County, 65-51.

“I thought the kids played hard tonight,” Union Head Coach Chris Simmons said. “It was great for them to come out and experience some success.”

Union (6-18) ended the regular season with the win. The game scheduled Friday night was called off due to road conditions.

“We look forward to getting back on the practice floor on Wednesday to build on this game,” Simmons said. “While it was great to win, we still did a lot of things wrong that we must improve on.”

Union will play St. Clair in the opening round of the Class 4 District 9 Tournament in Pacific Monday at 6 p.m. St. Clair is seeded fourth and Union is fifth. St. Clair won at Union Feb. 5, 64-57.

The Wildcats never were threatened in the game, but had some flat moments in the contest.

“By no means were we perfect,” Simmons said. “We still turned the ball over (27 times) and gave up too many offensive rebounds. They fought to overcome it.”

Simmons said everyone played a role in the game.

“Tonight was a real team effort,” Simmons said. “Everything started with our defense tonight. When we decide we are going to get stops, we can be tough because of our mix of size and athleticism, but it all depends on whether we decide we want to get stops and finish those stops with rebounds. We keep preaching that this season is not over and we must continue to get better.”

Simmons was happy with the play of his guards.

“Our guards really stepped up tonight which has been an inconsistent part of our game,” Simmons said. “Blake (Hulsey), Zig (Nick Ziegler), and TJ (Vitt) really played well tonight.”

Ziegler paced Union in scoring with 17 points. He added seven rebounds, three steals and two assists.

Vitt was next with 14 points. He added seven assists, seven rebounds and four steals.

Brian Borgmann stepped up with 12 points while adding seven rebounds, four blocked shots, two assists and two steals before fouling out in the fourth quarter.

Brandon Ford got into early foul trouble, but still scored nine points with 10 rebounds, four blocked shots, two assists and a steal.

Hulsey scored nine points while adding six rebounds three assists and a steal.

Ashton Dehn and Emmett Parker netted two points apiece. Dehn also had an assist and a rebound. Parker contributed a rebound.

Tanner Bunch dished out one assist while adding a rebound and a steal.

Dylan Small had one assist and one steal.

Kory Lucas added two rebounds.

Kevin Curran also played.