Trent Jones shoots the ball as Ripon High School graduate Riley Haas tries to block it.
Trent Jones shoots the ball as Ripon High School graduate Riley Haas tries to block it.

   If the Ripon College men’s basketball team wanted any realistic chance of hosting the Midwest Conference Tournament, it had to defeat St. Norbert Tuesday night.

   The Red Hawks did just that.

   They led from start to finish en route to a 76-61 home win.

   The win, which was their eighth-straight, moved them into a four-way tie for first place with St. Norbert, Monmouth and Lake Forest with a 9-3 conference record.

   It also marks their first regular-season sweep of the Green Knights since 2006-07. They won 69-61 at St. Norbert Jan. 17 to snap the Knights’ 47-game, home regular-season conference winning streak.

   “You always have a few goals at the beginning of the year. This one certainly was a game that we all pointed to ...,” Ripon head coach Ryan Kane said. “We’ve been battling since those early-season losses to fight our way back into contention. We did that here tonight and now, in some respects, we control our own destiny. We’ve got some home cooking here down the stretch, so that’s nice.”

   The Red Hawks started off the game on fire from behind the 3-point line. They made their first four attempts to jump out to an early 14-2 lead over St. Norbert.

Read the full story, which includes information on a record-setting performance against Illinois College and a win over Beloit, in the Feb. 1, 2018 edition of the Ripon Commonwealth Press.