The Rushford-Peterson boys’ basketball team may be the hottest team in southeast Minnesota right now as the Trojans travel to Chatfield tonight for a Three Rivers Conference game. The Trojans are ranked eighth in Class 1A and they have won thirteen in a row after losing two of their first three games of the season.
Rushford-Peterson finished third at the state tournament last year and nobody is surprised at the Trojans’ success this year because of the tradition of good basketball at the school. R-P has played in five of the last eight state tournaments. But there was a little bit of question of how good this year’s team could be coming into the year. The Trojans graduated three senior starters from last year’s team and they combined to score 65 percent of their points a year ago.
Cole Kingsley leads the team in scoring with 11.8 points per game but five players averaging between 7.5 and 11.8 points. Kingsley has been a big key at the point guard spot and he leads the Three Rivers Conference in assists, steals and field goal percentage. The Trojans use full court pressure and also a half court trapping defense, which has helped them outscore their opponents by 17 per game. But it hasn’t been easy all the time for the Trojans. Rushford-Peterson has trailed at halftime in at least a half a dozen games before coming back in the second half. The scary thing for area coaches is that this is a fairly young team. The Trojans start two sophomore and three juniors and they have just two seniors in their nine-man rotation.
Rushford-Peterson is 14-2 and they are tied for first place in the Three Rivers Conference at 11-2. The Trojans are gunning for their first ever Three Rivers Conference title and they are battling conference powerhouse Plainview-Elgin-Millville along with Southland for that top spot. P-E-M has won five straight Three Rivers Conference titles and they lost only three times during those five years. Rushford-Peterson has split a pair of meetings with the Bulldogs this season and they have a road game at Southland coming up on February 7th.
Tonight’s Rushford-Peterson game can be heard on K Country 99.3 starting at about 7:20.