Pulaski falls to Porta 56-45 in the
Bill Rucks Tournament
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[November 26, 2016]
Pulaski knew they would have their
hands full in this one Friday night.
Max Muller, a 6’5 senior for the
Blue Jays, has been a scoring
machine year after year on the
Hilltoppers and he just keeps
getting better. Once he caught fire
Friday night, he dropped 25 points
on the Hilltoppers, leading his team
to a 56-45 victory. At least he’s a
senior and Mount Pulaski won’t have
to worry about facing him anymore as
the two teams no longer play each
other in the regular season.
But wait, there’s another Muller in
the scorebook. Little 6’5 brother,
Mason, is a freshman and even
appears to be a little taller than
his older brother.
Add in sophomore Tyler Minor, who
scored 12 points Friday night and
Porta looks to be pretty solid for
the next several years.
Mount Pulaski’s 6’8 junior Peyton
Taylor gave the Muller boys and
Minor a run for their money though
as he poured in 10 points and pulled
down 10 rebounds.
Six-foot senior Lukas Aylesworth
managed to dodge the big boys in the
lane and score 12 points for Mount
Pulaski in the losing effort.
Even though Mount Pulaski suffered
the loss, the Hilltoppers played
another solid first half. Coming
back from an early 8-3 deficit, the
Hilltoppers turned things around and
managed an 11-10 first quarter lead
on a basket by Taylor.
Ben Rathgeb’s three with 25.6
seconds on the clock turned the tide
in Porta’s favor, 13-11, and the
first quarter scoring was in the
The Blue Jays jumped out to a 17-14
second quarter lead but at the 4:52
mark senior Eli Griesheim nailed a
three to tie the game. Max Muller
poured in Porta’s next four points
to put the Blue Jays up 21-17 and
then it was Mount Pulaski coming
back to tied the score again on
Aylesworth’s bank shot in the lane.
Mount Pulaski even had a couple
opportunities to take the lead but
failed to capitalize so Max and
company took advantage of the
moment. Max Muller’s back to back
threes closed out the second quarter
scoring and Porta’s lead was 30-23.
Mount Pulaski failed to make up any
ground in the third quarter and
still trailed 43-36 going into the
final eight minutes of play.
The closest Mount Pulaski would
get in the fourth quarter would be
48-43 after Brandon Kretzinger
knocked down a three at the 3:40
top of second column]
attempts a shot over Max Muller in
night’s game of the Bill Rucks
Tournament. The Mt. Pulaski
Hilltoppers fell to the Porta Blue
Again Mount Pulaski had a couple
missed opportunities to get right
back in this one and the experienced
Blue Jays capitalized again. Max
Muller hit a long three with 2:54
remaining and the Blue Jay crowd
roared with the lead now 51-43.
In the last two minutes of the
ballgame, it appeared that Mount
Pulaski had more turnovers than
points. Porta also shot 15 of 18
from the free throw line, while not
a difference maker, but Mount
Pulaski was only 8 of 15 from the
Throw in a couple late game steals
and Porta cruised quietly to a 56-45
win and punched their ticket to a
championship matchup with Decatur
LSA tonight at 8 p.m.
Mount Pulaski will get the chance to
play today at 5 p.m. vs. Edinburg.
The other two games feature Tri-City
taking on Calvary at 3:30 p.m. and
Central A & M plays Illini Central
at 6:30 p.m.
Mount Pulaski scoring
Max Muller 25
Mason Muller 2