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Dragons winning streak snapped by Vikings

Posted 12/20/2018

Lakin Farmer upsets the Cardinals’ defense as he goes for a lay-up for Halstead, last Tuesday night against Sedgwick.  Lakin Farmer upsets the Cardinals’ defense as he goes for a lay-up for Halstead, last Tuesday night against Sedgwick. By Jared Janzen

HALSTEAD—It was déjà vu for the Halstead boys basketball team, last Friday, as, for the second year in a row, they experienced their first loss of the season to Smoky Valley in a neck-and-neck contest. The Dragons lost in overtime, 43-46.

“We showed some signs of where we’re at, in terms of experience,” head coach, Lonnie Lollar said.

In 2017, the Dragons fell to Smoky Valley, 48-49. Friday’s loss snaps the Dragons’ 18-game winning streak, dating back to last year’s Rupp Tournament, when Halstead lost to Cheney, 52-61, which was the team’s only other loss, last season.

Halstead started out well against Smoky Valley with an 8-2 lead, establishing a good pace of the game, Lollar said. But the Vikings came back within one point by the end of the first quarter, 11-10. Halstead maintained a slight edge, 25-24 at halftime and 32-30 heading into the final quarter.

In the fourth quarter, Halstead’s only points were four free throws by senior Braden Gerber and a basket by senior Andrew O’Brien. Smoky Valley, meanwhile, scored a three, a basket and two free throws to send the game into overtime at 37-all.

“I don’t think we ever had the lead in overtime,” Lollar said. “We had some kids, who haven’t been in that situation before.”

During overtime, Halstead found themselves in foul trouble, early on. In fact, all nine of the Vikings’ points in overtime came from free throws, whereas Halstead scored three’s from O’Brien and sophomore Lakin Farmer. Down 43-46, Halstead had no time outs remaining and couldn’t pull off the win.

“We need to do a better job of manufacturing free throw opportunities,” Lollar said. The team shot six of ten from the line, but only four of these attempts came after halftime. Smoky Valley was 13 of 20 in free throws.

Gerber led the Dragon offense with 18 points, followed by Farmer with eight and O’Brien with seven.

Lollar said Smoky Valley had done a good job of guarding O’Brien, all night, but like a true team, other Dragons had stepped up in his place.

Also scoring for Halstead were Kaden Kraus and Josh Talbott, with three, apiece and David Schulte and Lane Pitts, with two, apiece.

“Hopefully we can learn from our mistakes so it doesn’t happen again,” Lollar said.

Last Tuesday, Halstead defeated Sedgwick, 63-46.

“Offensively we did pretty well,” Lollar said. “Sedgwick is a talented team.”

Halstead 26-22 at halftime and Lollar said his team had done a good job of playing unselfishly and moving the ball around. He praised Talbott and Schulte with sparking the team’s defensive energy.

O’Brien led the team with 23 points and Gerber posted 13. Also scoring were Kraus and Schulte, with eight, Talbott, with six and Farmer, with five. The team was four of eight from the line and made 11 three-pointers.

“It was probably our best all-around game, so far,” Lollar said. “Our team is still learning how to play varsity. I’ve seen improvement in everybody on the team, but we are pretty young. We only have three guys with experience at state.”

He added that Kraus had done a tremendous job of fighting that game, even though he’s not 100 percent yet, following a surgery over the summer.

Halstead faced Mulvane on Tuesday night in their final game before Christmas break. Although Mulvane had a 1-5 record, Lollar said he expected them to be a competitive team, since they’d played a tough schedule, so far.

“They’re better than their record shows,” he said.

For more coverage of Halstead sports, please see this week's print edition.

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Unanswered points fatal for Sedgwick

Posted 12/20/2018

Senior Trey Bright looks to pass the ball, last week, at Halstead. Bright finished the game with eight points.Senior Trey Bright looks to pass the ball, last week, at Halstead. Bright finished the game with eight points.By Bill Bush

SEDGWICK—Sedgwick put up a good fight last week, against Halstead, but defensive breakdowns in the second half allowed the Dragons to stretch the lead that proved to be too much to overcome. Sedgwick lost the game, 63-46.

“I was disappointed in our defensive effort,” Sedgwick Head Coach Darren Crumrine said. “In order to beat a quality team, like Halstead, you have to be locked in the entire game. I felt like we had way too many breakdowns, especially with our transition defense. We worked hard to take away the first options of Halstead's sets. Our first shot defense wasn't bad, we just didn't finish possessions with a rebound.”

It took over two minutes before either team scored. Halstead took a 2-0 lead, but Junior Mason Lacey tied it halfway through the first quarter. Halstead ran the lead up to 7-3, and then with fifteen seconds left, the two teams traded threes for a 10-6 game after one quarter.

Sedgwick fell behind by ten points, but with two minutes left, chipped away. Sophomore Nolan Crumrine and junior Kale Schroeder hit back-to-back threes, then, after Halstead added another two, senior Cauy Root scored to cut the deficit to 26-22 at the half.

Senior Trey Bright started the third quarter with a basket to cut the lead to two. Halstead added three and Lacey scored three of his seven points in the quarter to again bring Sedgwick to within two points.

The next two minutes changed the remainder of the game. Halstead scored ten unanswered points to give them a twelve-point lead. Sedgwick was able to trim the lead to eight, but a three-pointer toward the end of the third quarter by Halstead gave them a 45-34 lead over Sedgwick.

The Cardinals trimmed the lead to nine early in the fourth, but three missed free throws kept them from getting closer. They were outscored 15-7 the rest of the way.

“Offensively, we shot the ball well, despite our lack of movement,” D. Crumrine said. “I thought Halstead did a good job of pushing us farther out on the floor than we wanted to be. We have to fix our lack of screening and movement.”

Lacey, K. Schroeder and Bright led the Cardinals in scoring with 15, 12 and 8 respectively. Others scoring were N. Crumrine – 3, H. Schroder – 3, Root – 2, Smith – 2 and Shepherd – 1.

“Our guys really like playing very good teams,” Crumrine said. “It exposes your weaknesses and helps us improve. Halstead fits the description of a very good team. They are disciplined and run their stuff at a high level. They have good floor leaders and don't beat themselves. I saw a lot of positives for our team. We still have a long ways to go, but I am confident we will continue to work hard and make the improvement needed.”

On Friday night, the team traveled to Medicine Lodge to take on the Indians.

Junior Kale Schroeder made a basket and two free throws and seniors Hooper Schroeder and Colton Smith scored 3 and 2 points, respectively. It wasn’t nearly enough as Medicine Lodge hit four threes on their way to a 21-9 lead at the end of the first quarter.

“We were unable to overcome Medicine Lodge's initial offensive explosion,” Coach Darren Crumrine said. “They hit some shots where we had played pretty good defense.”

 The Indians hit three more three-pointers in the second quarter. K. Schroeder scored six points to lead the Cardinals’ second quarter scoring, but at half, they found themselves down, 20-38.

“A key stretch of the game was our inability to take advantage of getting to the free throw line in the second quarter,” D. Crumrine said. “We were able to get back into the game, but couldn't score with the clock stopped.”

Sedgwick missed seven free throws in the second quarter.

In the third quarter sophomore Nolan Crumrine hit two three’s, K. Schroeder added six points and Smith five, as Sedgwick closed the gap to 39-51.

K. Schroeder scored another six points in the fourth to lead the Cardinals attack, but in the end it wasn’t enough. They lost to Medicine Lodge by the final score of 65-52.

“We responded well out of half and got ourselves back into the game,” D. Crumrine said. “We had some possessions with wide open shots, we just didn't knock them down. I thought our guys competed well. However, we just didn't make enough plays.”

Scoring for Sedgwick were K. Schroeder – 22, N. Crumrine – 9, Smith – 7, H. Schroeder – 5, Cauy – 3, Mason – 2, Hoffsommer – 2 and Bright – 2. 

Sedgwick (2-4) hosted Haven on Tuesday evening, for their final game before Christmas break.

For coverage of the Sedgwick girls basketball team, please see this week's print edition.

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Chargers mow down Peabody, Fairfield

Posted 12/20/2018

Senior Anthony Schmitt guards the ball against Fairfield on Friday night, during Burrton’s 54-38 win.Senior Anthony Schmitt guards the ball against Fairfield on Friday night, during Burrton’s 54-38 win.By Jared Janzen

BURRTON— The Chargers added two wins to their record, last week, improving to 4-2 on the season. Burrton defeated Peabody-Burns, 72-52, last Tuesday night and Fairfield, 54-38, on Friday.

The Fairfield game was Burrton’s first home game of the season, after opening with five road matches.

“It was nice to play at home, last week, too,” head coach Roger O’Neal said. “We had a great crowd and that always makes the game more enjoyable.”

Senior Cooper Zehr scored nine points in the first quarter to help the Chargers jump to an 11-6 start. The team had extended this lead to 23-13 at halftime and in the third quarter, both teams posted 17 points to bring the game to 40-30, before Burrton finished putting the nail in the coffin, 54-38.

Zehr totaled 36 points for the Chargers, including three 3’s and 3-for-3 at the charity strip. Also contributing for the win were Bailey Hughes with six points, Anthony Schmitt with five, Bryan Swartz with four and Dakota Woodworth with three.

The team had 15 deflections and 18 steals.

O’Neal said he is seeing improvement in the Chargers’ defense.

“It seems like it takes longer for players to buy into defense than other aspects of the game,” he said. “We are splitting time between man and zone set, just to keep things interesting.”

Schmitt led the team in rebounds with 12, nine of which were on defense. He also had five assists.

Against Peabody, Zehr scored a season high of 46 points, beating his performance in the Solomon game by one point. Also contributing offensively to the 73-52 win were Woodworth with 11 points, Schmitt with six, Hughes with four and Ethan Powell and Swartz with three, each.

Schmitt again proved to be a defensive threat, with seven blocked shots and eight defensive rebounds (nine total).

Burrton shot 14 of 16 from the free throw line that game.

O’Neal said it had been fun to coach against Peabody, the team he previously helmed for four years.

“Just being in Peabody’s old ‘brown gym’ feels good,” he said. “And our players look forward to playing Peabody, each year.”

The team hosted Argonia on Tuesday night and will play at Inman on Friday, in their final game before Christmas vacation.

For coverage of the Burrton girls basketball team, please see this week's print edition.

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