Beavers overcome strong start by 'Horns in sub-state title game
Beavers overcome strong start by 'Horns in sub-state title game
By BRETT MARSHALL
KISMET — For a portion late in the first quarter and early second quarter of Saturday night's Class 3A sub-state boys championship game, the Holcomb Longhorns were able to do what only three teams could barely do against the Scott City Beavers. They had a lead.
For 2 minutes, 28 seconds, the Longhorns battled Scott City and were ahead at 17-13 late in the first and again at 19-17 with 7:25 go in the second stanza.
From there, the Beavers did what they do best and went on multiple runs and eventually produced a workmanlike 81-61 triumph over the Longhorns, thus earning a return trip to Hutchinson on Thursday for a chance to win their third consecutive state title.
In winning their third straight sub-state title, all against the Longhorns, the Beavers improved their season record to 22-1. They open defense of their state title on Thursday with a 3 p.m. game against Pittsburg-St. Mary's Colgan (17-5) at the Hutchinson Sports Arena.
Holcomb saw its season end at 18-5 under second-year coach Chad Novack. Three of those setbacks came against the Beavers, one against Denver South in the Southwest Classic and the other to Ulysses during the regular season.
"The kids just played a heckuva ballgame, and everything we did in the first quarter was clicking," Novack said of that early success. "The defense was clicking (5 Scott City turnovers), we were hitting the open shots, and I thought we were aggressive."
But as it has happened so frequently over the course of Scott City's three-year buzz-saw against opponents, the Beavers regrouped in the second quarter and started the first of four runs, this one 14-4, to go up by eight, 29-21, en route to a 38-27 halftime lead.
"I think once we recognized what they were trying to do with our two guards (Brett and Trey O'Neil), the others adjusted and got passes where they could score," Scott City coach Glenn O'Neil said.
Once the Beavers grabbed the lead, it seemed like they would never let up off the accelerator.
The 11-point halftime lead bulged to 19 by the end of the third quarter, thanks in part to runs of 8-2 and 11-3 by the Beavers. An 11-4 run in the first 2:14 of the fourth stretched the advantage to 27, 71-44.
"They're really tough, and they came out fired up," Meyer, who scored 17 points off 8-of-11 field goal shooting, said. "It's hard when you're playing them a third time and you've won by so much. They're kinda like brothers that we see every so often."
The Beavers' got a stellar effort from Hess, who dropped in 17 points by making 6-of-7 field goals and 5-of-7 free throws.
"Holcomb's a great team, and they were giving us problems early," Hess said. "When they got Heath back, they're a much, much better team than what we played earlier in the season. It was a little nerve-wracking there at the beginning. We just had to figure out what was going on, and I thought everybody did a great job of dishing off to Drew and Joey so they could get their shots."
Kite was again a big force inside despite some early foul issues that included a technical foul midway through the third quarter. The 6-4 post player had 22 points and 19 rebounds to help the Beavers dominate the boards, 35-23. Brett O'Neil added 14 points and Trey O'Neil chipped in with 10 as the five starters accounted for 80 of the 81 points.
Tyler LaSalle had perhaps his best game against the Beavers, scoring 22 points to lead the Longhorns. Tucker and Aaron Hernandez, who was razor-sharp in the first quarter, added 11 points each. The only edge in statistics for the Longhorns came in the turnover category, where they had 9 compared to 13 for the Beavers.
And the fact that it was the third straight year for Holcomb to see its season end by Scott City wasn't lost on Scott City's coach O'Neil.
"I told Chad (Novack) that it's a shame they aren't a 4A school with a few more students," coach O'Neil said. "They deserve to go."
The Longhorns put together an impressive season despite suffering a barrage of injuries that kept Tucker out for most of the season, along with Clay Gilbert and Cory Roth, who missed portions of the first half of the year.
Holcomb 17 10 14 20 -- 61
Scott City 15 23 22 21 -- 81
Holcomb (18-5) — Tucker 3-13 3-4 11, LaSalle 8-19 3-5 22, Hernandez 5-9 1-3 11, Cox 0-1 0-2 0, Gottschalk 0-0 0-0 0, Gilbert 1-2 2-2 4, Richmeier 2-5 0-0 6, Bennett 2-5 2-4 6, Ramsey 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 21-54 11-20 61.
Scott City (22-1) — B. O'Neil 3-7 8-11 14, Wells 0-0 1-2 1, T. O'Neil 3-3 3-5 10, B. Meyer 0-1 0-0 0, Hess 6-7 5-7 17, Wilson 0-2 0-0 0, J. Meyer 8-11 1-3 17, Kite 8-12 6-7 22. Totals 28-43 24-35 81.
3-point goals--Holcomb 6-18 (Tucker 2-7, LaSalle 2-7, Richmeier 2-4), Scott City 1-5 (B. O'Neil 0-2, T. O'Neil 1-1, Wilson 0-1, Kite 0-1). Rebounds--Holcomb 23 (Bennett 8), Scott City 35 (Kite 19). Turnovers--Holcomb 9, Scott City 13. Fouls--Holcomb 28, Scott City 17. Fouled out--Holcomb (Hernandez, Richmeier, Ramsey). Technical fouls--Scott City (Kite).
Found 9 comment(s)!
This is why people from Garden City (and pretty much everywhere else) don't like Holcomb. Can somebody get Holcomb their own newspaper so they don't have to whine here anymore??
Posted by: Phillip C. on 3/8/2013
I think Garden has some open dates in football, any takers? Thats what I thought, oh wait a minute the only time the smaller schools want to play them is once every 80 years.
Posted by: Football on 3/7/2013
If you read the article you will notice that Coach O'Neil says Holcomb deserves to go. I would guess he is a better judge of talent and just a bit more knowledgeable about the game of basketball than most of you posting here.
Posted by: Watcher on 3/5/2013
Statebound and season play
OK. First off, GC was not missing their point guard, Tristan Nanninga. The player not suiting up was Emilio Parr and he is a post player. Yes, Holcomb was missing Heath Tucker, one of their better players. Yes, during the season Holcomb beat Garden City but lost to Ulysses, a team that Garden City beat so it goes to show that any given night a team can be off or a team can be hot thus going home with the loss or the win.
Bottom line, Holcomb couldn't beat Scott City, when needed, to advance to state tourney and Garden City did what they needed to beat Dodge City and that is why they are playing on Wed while Holcomb boys are staying home.
Unfortunately for Holcomb they were in the same Sub State bracket as Scott City. There are teams all over the state that probably feel the same way, that they too could be at state if not for the region/sub state assignment they received.
There are a lot of good athletes in SW Kansas and quite a few good teams. Good luck to those teams that are headed to their respective state tournaments. For those teams not advancing, thank you for your hard work & great play during the season, and hope to see you at State next year.
Posted by: Just an Observer on 3/5/2013
Meade has a good record because they haven't played anybody. Holcomb beat them in football and would do the same in basketball. I don't know anything about Andale but you obviously don't know anything about Holcomb as well. Hays beat Liberal by 9, Holcomb killed Liberal. Garden City already lost to Holcomb and Holcomb had one of the best athletes in SW kansas not even suited up and it still wasn't that close. But you didn't have your point guard, which would have helped your post players from getting dominated inside??? Why didn't he play again?
To GC GC
And making it to state isn't what it's about winning it is? Really, it's no big deal to get there then?
Posted by: Finney County Champs on 3/5/2013
You had to go there?
Garden City has only beat 3 teams with a record above .500. You may have been without your point guard but Holcomb was without one of their better players as well. Enjoy your one game at state this week.
Posted by: observer on 3/5/2013
Yes maybe 1a
3a Scott City-NO
5a Salina or Hays-NO
6a Garden City-NO You beat us without our point guard. You are dreaming.
Posted by: Garden on 3/4/2013
Wait till next year Scott won't be so good.
Then maybe Holcomb will make it to State. Making it to state isn't what its about, winning it is.
Maybe you need to change your coach again. That worked out well.
Posted by: GC GC on 3/4/2013
I'm thinking that if the Holcomb Boys had played in any other Western Kansas Sub-State, in any class including 6A, they would be going to state.
Posted by: Fan on 3/4/2013