SPRING VALLEY, WI - Potential is a dangerous word. It can be used to motivate, and it can be used to denigrate. It’s promises unfulfilled, and dreams that are achieved.

Last week, the Spring Valley boys’ basketball team rebounded from a tough pair of losses the week before to give a glimpse of what their potential could be with an outright upset of preseason conference favorite to win it all: Colfax in the conference opening game. The Vikings were ranked 10th in Division Four in the last coaches poll and had a 3-0 record coming in.

It wasn’t the Cardinals’ only success of the week. Valley defeated Alma-Pepin earlier in the week after a tough loss to Fall Creek over the weekend before.

SV 76, Alma-Pepin 26
The win came at the right time for the Cardinals. After suffering two straight losses before and with a big game coming up, Valley needed to figure out how to bounce back. They did so with the win against the Eagles, in a game that was never in doubt.

Alma-Pepin made a free throw to start the scoring in the game for a 1-0 lead, that was it though as the Cardinals then scored the next 28 straight points before the Eagles got a three-pointer to fall through with just over eight minutes left in the half. Valley forged a 52-14 halftime lead and coasted home for the final score win.

The Cardinals made 61% of their shots from the floor (30-for-49), had 23 steals and committed just 10 turnovers in the game. Alma-Pepin made just 26% from the floor (11-of-43), had one steal and committed 27 turnovers.

Valley was led in scoring by junior Aaron Borgerding with 20 points, six rebounds, five assists and 10 steals. Senior Dylan Bosshart had 13 points, while junior Cade Hannack had 11 and sophomore Mike Bauer had 12 points.

Alma-Pepin was led by Ethan Brecka with eight points.

SV 53, Colfax 46
The Cardinals forged a lead in this game early on, and continued to maintain it throughout the game. It was a coming-out party for the most part for junior Trevor Stangl.

“Trevor really had a good all-around game for us,” said Head Coach Rob Bosshart. “It was the kind of game we have been looking to get from him, the kind of game we need from him for us to be successful.”

The junior was perfect from the floor for the game, making six three pointers in six attempts. Adding to that he was 3-for-7 from the free throw line for 21 points for the game.

But it wasn’t just offensively he was effective. Stangl also pulled down six rebounds and had three of the teams’ seven steals on the game.

Valley forged a 25-21 halftime lead and while it disappeared early in the second half, the Cardinals continued to play their game, stifling the Viking offense and hustling. It was just the kind of unselfish game the team is capable of playing, looking for the “one-more” pass, helping on defense, hustling from every player. It was simply a statement game.

The team made 18-of-40 shots from the field (45%), 10-of-16 free throws, had just 13 turnovers and had 7 steals. Colfax pulled down more boards (39-29), but also shot just 31% from the field (18-of-58) and made 6-of-7 from the free throw line. The Vikings also committed 14 turnovers and had nine steals.

Stangl led the Cardinals with 21, Bosshart had 13, Borgerding chipped in 11 and senior Lance McMurrin had eight points as the lone point getters for the Cardinals. That doesn’t mean the other players didn’t contribute in the game.

“We got a lot of really good effort up and down the bench tonight,” Bosshart said. “I think everyone had to contribute for us to get this win, whether it was making a defensive stop, a good pass, setting a screen or hustling back on defense. Just a good all-around effort on the whole team.”

George Scharlau led the Vikings with 20 points and 11 rebounds. Ben Thompson chipped in another 11 points to help the effort.

The Cardinals record improves to 3-2, 1-0 in the conference. Valley played at Mondovi this past Tuesday and at Durand tomorrow (Friday, December 14) night. The Cardinals are then off until playing at the Cuba City tournament on December 27 and 28. Valley plays Cuba City on December 27 and Richland Center on December 28. The team will return to Spring Valley to host Elk Mound in a conference game on Friday, January 4.