Central Plains girls, Macksville boys cruise to wins

Macksville senior Ryan Kuckelman drives against Central Plains junior Hunter Klima in the first...
Macksville senior Ryan Kuckelman drives against Central Plains junior Hunter Klima in the first half of Friday's 69-26 road win.((photo by Mike Courson))
Published: Jan. 6, 2023 at 11:12 PM CST
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CLAFLIN, Kan. (Catch it Kansas) - As the two ranked teams Friday night, the Central Plains girls and Macksville boys cruised to a pair of wins. The No. 10 Lady Oilers (1A, Div. I) had to fight against a second-half challenge before pulling back away 60-40. The No. 4 Macksville boys (1A, Div. I) dominated from start to finish in a 69-26 rout.

Lady Oilers 60, Macksville 40

Central Plains opened the game well enough behind 11 first-quarter points from senior Brynna Hammeke. The result was a quick 17-3 lead after one quarter. The gap was 23-6 on a stickback from senior Kyla Metro before Macksville began cutting into the lead with back-to-back scores from freshman Maria Garcia and sophomore Rylee Palser.

The Lady Mustangs continued to whittle away early in the third quarter, getting a putback from sophomore Kambry Adams. Two free throws from her cut the deficit to 33-24 with 3:54 remaining in the frame. She scored 10 points and grabbed three boards in the quarter.

“We didn’t defend inside very well,” said Central Plains coach Pat Stiles. “The first half I thought we defended very well, holding them to 14 points. In the third quarter they made a little run, but we held our composure. I thought the last 3-4 minutes of the third quarter, we played really well. We moved the ball. We got the kind of shot we wanted. I was really impressed with the last five minutes of that quarter. We withstood the run then really blew it open.”

The Lady Oilers showed flashes of the past, pushing the advantage back to 51-28 by the end of the third with late threes from Metro and Hammeke. Hammeke finished with a game-high 24 points and grabbed six boards to go with several steals. Metro added 13 points and six rebounds, Marilyn Soeken scored eight points, and Addy Ogle finished with six points and six boards.

Adams scored 16 of her team-high 21 points in the second half for Macksville, adding six rebounds on the night. Mayce Russell added seven points, and Joselin Garcia scored four points.

Macksville boys 69, Central Plains 26

Rebounding told the story early on as the Mustangs jumped out to a 14-1 lead. Several of those points came off stickbacks or tip-ins as Macksvile grabbed 12 of the first 13 rebounds in the game. The result was an 18-4 score after one quarter, and a 37-12 lead by halftime.

“Those were things we talked about in the scouting report that we needed to do, and I thought we really did a good job of that,” said Macksville coach Jeff Kuckelman. “Another big key was, I know (Oiler junior Peyton) Ryan’s a big key for them. We did a really good job of trying to keep it out of his hands as much as we could. I think they had one offensive rebound in the first half, according to our stats. We talked about not giving them second shots. They were one shot and out.”

Senior Lance Lickiss scored six points and grabbed three rebounds in the first eight minutes, and 6-6 senior Ryan Kuckelman added four points and five rebounds in the opening frame.

Sophomore Diego Esparza went on to pace the Mustangs with 17 points, followed by 13 from Lickiss, eight from senior Rogelio Ibarra, and seven apiece from Kuckelman and Alvaro Ibarra. Sophomore Aiden Hekele led the Oilers with seven points. Ryan was kept in check with six points, and Evan Stratmann also scored six points.