In yet another show of force, the third-ranked Redwood Valley boys basketball team cruised to a 70-54 victory over 12th ranked Fairmont Tuesday night in a preview of two of Section 3AA’s elite teams.
With the victory, Redwood Valley improves to 18-1 overall and has three straight quality victories (Windom Area, Luverne and Fairmont) to its credit following a two-point loss to Marshall on Jan. 31.
Tuesday night the game got off to a great start for the hometown Cardinals as Jordan Ford scored a tough bucket inside, Beau Stough buried a three-pointer and Mike Busack was found open on the baseline for a two-handed jam that but Redwood Valley up 7-0 just two minutes into the contest.
A pair of early fouls on Stough would change the complexion however as Fairmont (16-5) was able to rally to take an 18-17 lead with under nine minutes to play in the half.
Redwood Valley’s cold shooting would come to an end shortly thereafter as Alec Koster scored on a three-point play, Busack scored six straight, Stough would add another three and Busack bombed a three with under a minute to play in the half that would give the hometown Cards a 42-29 lead at the break.
A flurry to start the second half would essentially put the game away as Redwood Valley increased its lead to 22 points and they would ride it out from there for a comfortable victory.
Redwood Valley got a scare with six minutes to play as Busack hit the floor and stayed down with what appeared to be an ankle injury.
He was able to walk off under his own power and should be good to go for Friday night’s game against Jackson Co.?Central.
Busack would finish with a game-high 29 points, seven rebounds, four blocked shots and three assists.
Stough had a big game scoring 13 points, grabbing eight rebounds and dishing out five assists.
Ford went 5-of-7 from the floor on the way to 12 points and Koster finished with 11 points and six rebounds.
Redwood Valley shot 51 percent from the floor, hit 7-of-14 from the charity stripe and had nine turnovers.
It’s shaping up to be an interesting race in both the north and south halves of the Section 3AA bracket.
Redwood Valley will be the top seed in the North with a perfect 13-0 record against the Section.
The Cards have outscored opponents by a 71.3-51.9 ppg margin and are 6-0 against the Section’s top teams (Montevideo, Fairmont, Worthington and Windom Area).
Montevideo - whose only Section loss is to Redwood Valley - is ranked 10th in Class AA with a record of 17-4 and recently beat a good Willmar team by five.
Lake Crystal Welcome Memorial is 18-4 with a one-point loss to Fairmont and a loss to second-ranked St. Peter.
They did recently suffer a bad 72-64 loss at Sibley East.
In the South half, Worthington is 15-5 with its only Section losses coming twice at the hands of Redwood Valley.
Windom Area is 14-6 with losses to Fairmont, Redwood Valley (2) and Worthington.
Fairmont meanwhile is 16-5 with a one-point loss to Mankato West and a season split with St. Peter.
Redwood Valley 70
RV scoring - Busack 29, Stough 13, Ford 12, Koster 11, Runkel 3, Widmer 2
Fairmont scoring - unavailable