HUGHSON – Ripon Christian kept its perfect Trans-Valley League record intact but may have lost a key player in the process.
Travis Vander Molen left the Knights’ 58-45 victory over Hughson in the first quarter with a knee injury that head coach Ron Vander Molen said appeared to be severe.
The junior forward landed awkwardly on another player, coach Vander Molen said. He is scheduled to have an MRI today to determine the severity of the twist.
“I’m a little worried about him,” coach Vander Molen said. “I hope it turns out OK. It was tough … and this is a tough game.”
The injury sucked the air of Ripon Christian’s sixth straight win. The Knights are 5-0 in the Trans-Valley League, and their latest victory was a lot like Tuesday’s against crosstown rival Ripon.
In other words, a grind.
The Huskies kept the game close and only trailed by four at the intermission, 26-22, but a balanced inside-out attack allowed Ripon Christian to pull away late.
Sean Broker poured in 23 points and Daniel Hannink had nine points off the bench. Hannink was forced onto the floor after Travis Vander Molen went down. He responded with three 3-pointers in the second quarter.
“He did a good job coming off the bench,” coach Vander Molen said.
Danny Vander Molen had 14 points and 3-point specialist Austin Alger finished with six, including a pivotal 3 in the third quarter.
Centers Jake Schollenberg and Lukas Vermeulen helped solidify the post and combined for eight rebounds.
Kyle Colyn had six assists for the Knights, who host Hilmar on Tuesday.
“We made some changes, offensively and we got the ball to Sean a little more,” Ron Vander Molen said. “It was a lot like the Ripon game. We had good balance, scoring-wise.”