It took a non-KSHSAA basketball team to hand the No. 1 St. John boys their first loss. The Tigers bounced back to on Friday. The Central Plains teams remain hot.
The top-ranked Tiger boys nearly made it through the regular-season with a perfect record. Tuesday, St. John traveled to Wichita to play non-KSHSAA entity Word of Life. The Fire outscored the Tigers 35-17 in the middle quarters to get a 66-54 win. St. John (18-1) bounced back to down Macksville73-57 on Friday. St. John is 6-0 in the CPL. Friday, the Tigers did not pull away until the fourth quarter when they outscored the Stangs 21-8. Sophomore Dean Wade scored 23 points on 7-of-10 shooting, also leading the team with 11 rebounds and five assists. Junior Zuriel Reyes hit 4-of-7 three point tries to finish with 20 points. Spencer Nusser scored 16 points and Omar Ramirez added 10 points.
The No. 3 Lady Tigers (17-2) outscored their two opponents by a combined 121-23. Friday, the girls downed Macksville 66-15. Tuesday, the squad allowed just one point combined in the first, third, and fourth quarters combined in a 55-8 win at Word of Life. Teresa Christie paced the team with 23 points, followed by 11 points from Alexis Witt. Jamie Waters finished with eight points, eight assists, and four rebounds.
The Oiler squads keep on winning. The No. 5 Lady Oilers took over the top spot in the CPL, moving to 7-1 in league play after defeating Ness City 64-25 on Tuesday, then beating Kinsley 62-37 on Friday. The girls finish the regular-season at 18-2 overall. In Tuesday’s win, senior Jennifer Hitschmann scored eight of her 18 points in the first quarter. Central Plains went on to lead Ness City 36-7 at the half. Reagan Phelan added 13 points and Breanna Holmes scored eight points.
The boys also won two games to close out the regular-season at 12-8. The Oilers won five of their last six games, including the final four games. Tuesday, the boys downed Ness City 52-38. Friday, Kinsley fell victim 60-39. Tuesday, the Oilers trailed Ness City 32-30 after three quarters. Konner Hickel hit two threes in the final frame, and the team converted 10-of-12 free throw tries and outscored the Eagles 22-6 to take the win. Michael Ryan led the team with 13 points. Hickel and Braeden Crites each scored 12 points, and Layne Bieberle finished with 11 points. Friday night, senior Bryce Steiner, who has missed all of his final season after being diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s Lymphoma, got in the game and hit one of his two free throw tries.
Few teams will see a tougher weekend than the Macksville boys did. After downing Otis-Bison 72-31 on Tuesday, the Mustangs (12-7) fell to No. 1 St. John (1A, Div. I) 73-57. Saturday night, the squad traveled to No. 1 Meade (2A) for a 73-45 loss. Tuesday night, Macksville built a 40-19 lead by the half and outscored Otis-Bison 32-12 in the second half. Tanner Tranbarger hit three threes to lead the team with 16 points and seven assists. Adolfa Ibarra added 14 points, and Jordan Welch hit three triples for 11 points. Simon Miller also hit double-figures with 10 points.
The Lady Mustangs had a similar week, getting a 37-32 win against Otis-Bison early in the week, then falling to No. 3 St. John 66-15 and losing to Meade 62-28. Tara Bunker scored 10 of her 12 points in the second quarter on Tuesday.
The Coyote teams had a dismal week 11 with a combined 0-4 record. The Lady Coyotes fell to Victoria 51-41 on Tuesday, then lost to No. 5 Central Plains 62-37 on Friday. The boys had an even worse week, falling 64-48 to Victoria, and coming up short 60-39 against Central Plains.
The girls led Central Plains 11-10 after one quarter on Friday. Central Plains won the next two quarters by a combined 48-17 to take command. Brittany Gleason paced the team with 13 points. Amber Espinosa scored nine of her 11 points in the first half. The boys trailed 34-21 at the half of their game against the Oilers on Friday. Nathan Frame went 9-of-10 from the stripe to lead the Coyotes with 16 points. Gustano Chantz hit double-figures with 10 points.
The Victoria boys secured a winning season with two wins in week 11. Victoria is 11-8 overall after a 64-48 win at Kinsley on Tuesday and a 53-35 win at Ness City on Friday. In an otherwise mostly even game, the Knights outscored Ness City 29-12 in the middle quarters of Friday’s win. Junior Clayton Roth finished with 12 points. Bryan Dome added 11 points, and Phillip Nowak finished with nine points and six rebounds.
The Lady Knights (10-9) got by Kinsley 51-41 but fell to Ness City 64-48. Tuesday, the girls bounced back from a 14-11 first quarter deficit to lead 26-22 by the half and 34-27 after three quarters. Senior Ashley Dome hit three threes to finish with 11 points and 10 rebounds. Audra Nowak also scored 11 points, and Kristin Huser flirted with a triple-double with 10 points, nine rebounds, and six assists.
The Cougars will be looking for some momentum heading into the post-season following a combined 0-4 week. The boys (6-13) fell to Macksville 72-31 on Tuesday and lost to Solomon 72-37 on Friday. The Lady Cougars (4-15) came up just short in a 37-32 loss to Macksville, then fell to Solomon 54-32.
Dylan Wissman, Hayden Meier, and Tyler Maier each scored eight points in Tuesday’s loss. The girls led their game against Macksville 18-14 at the half but could not hold on to the lead. Hannah Banniser led the Lady Cougars with 11 points.
The Lady Eagles picked up the lone week 11 win for the basketball teams with a 64-48 win against Victoria on Friday. Tuesday, the girls (9-9) fell to No. 5 Central Plains 64-25. Friday, the Eagles outscored Ness City in each of the first three quarters to lead 29-18 at the half and 48-32 after three quarters. Freshman Regan Stiawalt poured in 17 points in the win, followed by 14 points from Jessie Rubottom and 11 points from Tristan McVicker. Erin Flax and Makenna Fritts each scored eight points.
In a rare two loss week, the boys fell to 12-7 with a 53-35 loss to Victoria and a 52-38 loss to Central Plains. Friday, the Eagles gave up 17 points to Victoria in the middle quarters. Colin Foos scored nine points in the loss and Garrett Flax finished with eight points.
The Leopard basketball teams took it easy in week 11 with just one pair of games on Tuesday. Unfortunately neither side could get a win against visiting Stockton. The boys lost a 59-57 thriller to the No. 10 Tigers. The girls fell 45-32.
The boys (6-13) lead by two in the final minute before Stockton used a free throw and last-second putback to get the win. LaCrosse trailed 45-33 entering the third quarter and scored 24 points in the frame to get that lead. Sophomore Sheldon Schmidt led the team with 19 points and 10 rebounds. Marshall Jay added 11 points and seven boards. The Lady Leopards (4-15) also trailed big after three quarters at 32-16. They outscored the Tigers 16-13 in the final eight minutes but could not make up the gap. Sophomore Alyssa Oborny scored 12 points in the loss.