CARROLL — Balanced scoring and an improved defensive effort helped guide visiting Perry to a 60-56 win over Carroll in a Raccoon River Conference boys cage battle Friday.
Neither team was able to pull away from the other, as was the case in Perry’s home win over Carroll on Dec. 18. However, that final score was 79-73, as the teams combined for 152 points — 36 more than scored Friday.
Senior Ryan Rathje returned to form for the Jays. The 6-5 forward had scored only 21 points in Perry’s six latest games entering the rematch with the Tigers, but the Bluejay sharpshooter had 15 points and seven rebounds to help spark the victory.
Shammond Ivory had an identical 15 points and seven boards, with Kyle Nevitt providing 13 points, nine rebounds and three steals and Janier Puente 11 points, five caroms and three steals. Connor Nielsen chipped in with four points, four boards and three blocked shots, with two points from Alex Long closing the Perry scoring tab.
The teams ended the first quarter knotted at 22-all, but Perry (9-7, 6-4) managed to open a 37-30 halftime lead, only to have Carroll (5-10, 2-8) respond strongly and tie the game at 46-all entering the final eight minutes.
Perry, barring a weather-related postponement, will travel to ADM for a much-anticipated rematch after the Tigers prevailed, 78-66, Jan. 5 in an emotional contest. Conference play is scheduled to continue Friday with a visit from Winterset.