GREEN BAY — Just a few miles down the road from the Kress Events Center — site of the Beaver Dam prep boys basketball team’s game vs. Luxemburg-Casco on Friday afternoon — is the Zippin Pippin, a wooden roller coaster built in the early 1900s that resided in Memphis, Tennessee, until 2010, when it was purchased by Bay Beach Amusement Park.
It isn’t Green Bay’s biggest claim to fame — obviously — but given the fact that Elvis Presley was reportedly quite fond of the Pippin, it’s definitely a feather in Titletown’s hat.
What the heck does all this have to do with the Golden Beavers? Well, nothing really — except that their 60-48 win over the Spartans on the third and final day of the Sun Drop Shootout hosted by Shawano High School was one heck of a roller coaster ride.
The Beavers (5-3) surged to a 39-24 halftime lead, watched it evaporate and turn into a 48-48 tie with 4 minutes to play, and then finished on a 12-0 run to turn away L-C (2-6) and extend their winning streak to three games.
“Happy with the way we started. Happy with the way we ended. The middle wasn’t real strong,” Beaver Dam head coach Tim Ladron said. “We had a stretch there where we really struggled on both ends of the floor and let them back into the game.”
Max Klawitter came off the bench and hit four 3-pointers in the first half for all 12 of his points in the game — and all but three of his points on the year — to fuel the Beavers early.
“They tried to play a little bit of zone with us and Max came in and really did a nice job of hitting a whole bunch of wide open looks,” Ladron said. “Max is certainly capable of that, and he gave us a really nice spark and really got us going, and our kids fed off that.
“He’s worked hard in practice, and he got his opportunity and he took advantage of it.”
In the end, though, it was Connor Cullen (six points in the final four minutes, including 2-of-2 at the free throw line), Sam Wilke (4-of-4 at the line) and Dillon Livingston (two points) who took over during the 12-0 closing run to seal the deal.
In fact, Cullen’s six points down the stretch gave him 12 for the game, to go along with 10 rebounds and seven assists.
Wilke led the way with 17 points and had five assists, while Livingston had seven points, five steals and four rebounds. Justin Douma also had four rebounds to go along with his seven points.
Next up for the Beavers is a Badger North Conference game at Sauk Prairie on Thursday.
BEAVER DAM 60, LUXEMBURG-CASCO 48
Beaver Dam 39 21 — 60
Lux-Casco 24 24 — 48
BEAVER DAM (60) — Max Klawitter 12, Sam Wilke 17, Dillon Livingston 7, Connor Cullen 12, Adam Bird 1, Jordan Schwanke 2, Justin Douma 7, McGauley 2. TOTALS (FGM FTM-FTA PTS): 21 12-14 60.
LUX-CASCO (48) — Dylan Hanson 4, Anthony Ofradovec 5, Noah Lindsley 4, Josh Zeitler 8, Matt Dorn 2, Ryan Robrillard 10, Nathan Coisman 11, Blake Yagodinski 4. TOTALS (FGM FTM-FTA PTS): 18 7-8 48.
3-pointers: Beaver Dam 6 (Max Klawitter 4, Sam Wilke 1, Justin Douma 1), Lux-Casco 5 (Anthony Ofradovec 1, Josh Zeitler 2, Ryan Robrillard 2). Total fouls: Beaver Dam 8, Lux-Casco 16.