Uhlir's Hot Shooting Leads Linn-Mar to 61-41 Win Over Prairie

By Jeremiah Davis, Reporter

MARION – It's been historically cold the last several days in the Midwest, forcing school closures all over.

But last night, Linn-Mar junior Nic Uhlir did his best to heat things back up, going 4-of-4 from 3-point range – he had one miss, but he was fouled in the act of shooting – for 15 points, helping lead the Lions to a 61-41 dismantling of Cedar Rapids Prairie.

"The shots were falling. It was fun out there," Uhlir said with a grin. "A lot of drive and kicks got me open. I was just moving, trying to find an open window, and my guys were finding me."

Linn-Mar (4-3, 2-0 MVC Valley) got business as usual from its guards against Prairie, with leading scorer Jordan Bohannon pouring in 17 points on 7-of-14 shooting from the field (3-of-8 from 3-point range).

Lions' coach Chris Robertson said their guard play drives the offense, and when shots are falling, it's easy to get things rolling.

"Obviously our guards are going to kind of tell the story for us, and Jordan and Nic do a great job," Robertson said. "They play really well together, and play off each other really well. When they're hitting threes, it makes us pretty good at times.

"(Nic) had a big night. He hit some big threes that helped us stretch the lead in the third quarter, and that was big for us."

The spark Uhlir provided in the third came after Linn-Mar only managed to take a 25-18 lead into the break. Robertson said his team was playing hard, but lacked the energy he'd hoped for.

Prairie (2-5, 0-1) - which was led by Michael Sims, who had 15 points on 6-of-12 shooting from the field – started the game in a full-court press, but the game wore on the Lions were able to exploit it, and got several buckets in transition.

"(The press) slowed us down a bit in the first half, I don't think we attacked it," Robertson said. "We talked about that at halftime. I thought in the third quarter we amped up our energy, and we were able to get out in transition, which is to our strength.

"That just helped open the game up."

Linn-Mar is now 2-0 following winter break after going 2-3 in its non-conference schedule, one which featured four teams ranked in the top ten of the Gazette boy's prep poll – Waukee (No. 9), Bettendorf (No. 2), Southeast Polk (No. 8 ) and Dubuque Senior (No. 3).

With the temperature outside cooling off, the Lions could be heating up just in time, and feel primed for the MVC part of their schedule

"We obviously had a very difficult non-conference, preseason schedule, and hopefully if you take care of business, that pays off down the stretch," Robertson said. "They're playing well, and we're getting better."

Read more: http://iowaprepsports.com/2014/01/07/uhlir-heats-up-on-a-cold-night/#ixzz2pmOZtENc
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