CLAFLIN, Kan. - A few things are given this time of year. Friday night the Central Plains girls played host to Victoria in a Class 1A regional semifinal. True to form, the Lady Oilers put on a show on both ends of the court en route to an 86-31 running-clock win. Central Plains will play Otis-Bison in Saturday's regional title game.
“Whenever you can host the playoffs at home, it’s awesome,” said Lady Oiler senior Emily Ryan. “We’re just taking advantage of every opportunity we can get. We haven’t played for a whole week so we were just excited to get out here and play again. It was a lot of fun.”
Central Plains put up 25 points in the first quarter despite not getting on the board until Ryan found Kassidy Nixon nearly two minutes in. Ryan added a quick four points as the lead grew to 6-2. Victoria was able to hang around early. Freshman Macy Hammerschmidt connected on a three, then sophomore Melany Huser scored for a 9-8 score with three minutes to play in the opening frame.
That’s when the Lady Oilers made their move. Rugan scored on an inbounds play, Addison Crites scored inside, then Rugan scored from the outside. Ryan put up 15 points in the first eight minutes as Central Plains opened up a 25-8 lead.
Lady Oiler senior Zoe Potter got a quick transition bucket to open the second quarter, then it was once again Ryan’s turn. She scored nine points in a 3-minute stretch and finished the first half with 27 points. That meant a 46-19 halftime lead for Central Plains.
The Lady Oilers turned it up on both ends of the floor in the third quarter, outscoring Victoria 28-4 in that period. Ryan headed to the bench early, finishing with 37 points, 10 assists, and seven steals in less than 23 minutes of court time.
Crites had a big third quarter. She missed just two shots all night, finishing with 11 points and five steals. Nixon and Rugan each sat with eight points. Freshman Brynna Hammeke scored eight of her 10 points in the running-clock fourth quarter.
Lady Knight junior Brooklyn Kuhn scored all nine of her points in the first half to lead Victoria. Huser finished with six points, and sophomore Kassi Weber scored five points.
Central Plains will host Otis-Bison in Saturday’s regional championship game. The Lady Oilers are responsible for the one Lady Cougar loss on the season, and Otis-Bison led late in the first half of that first meeting.
“It’s nice to have a feel them,” said Ryan. “It’s a whole different game though so we’re going to have to bring it and see what we can do.”