Saturday, 19 September 2020
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Kaws Tame Tigers in Thrilling 3A Sub State Boys Opener
By Justin Fluke
Copyright: MSC Sports

It just didn't seem fair in a Sub State that featured seven of the eight teams with a winning record and three of the top ranked teams in the state in Class 3A, that bitter Big 7 rivals Jeff West and Perry Lecompton would have to meet in the opening round of the post season. However, that was indeed the case on Monday night and it made for a super exciting atmosphere and basketball game as the rubber match for the season went to the Kaws at home in a 56-53 victory against the Tigers. 

After the teams had traded five-point win on the opponents home courts already this season, it was Perry that grabbed the early advantage on Monday by scoring the first seven points of the game and then causing Jeff West to take their second timeout of the first quarter with the Kaws ahead 15-4 at the 3:10 mark following another three-pointer by Dawson Williams, who scored 13 points in this stretch to start the game. The Tigers would respond with a 10-0 run sparked by a triple from Carson Brading and pulled within 15-14 after one quarter before taking the lead in the second period.  Jeff West capped a 21-7 run by taking a 25-22 lead into the halftime break. 

There were six lead changes and five ties through the second and third quarters, but behind a 19-13 third stanza, Perry Lecompton took a 41-38 advantage into the fourth frame and would hold on for the win while making 13 of 14 free throws in the second half, including all eight attempts in the fourth quarter and four free throws to clinch the win in the last 20 seconds. Parker Stone came alive with a trifecata's and a couple buckets in transition to score eight points in that third frame while Blake Farmer scored 10 of his 12 points in the second half and Billy Welch also delivered all eight of his points after intermission, including going 6-6 at the stripe and giving JW a 54-50 lead by making two free throws with 19 second remaining. 

Jeff West never trailed by more than seven points (45-38) after the first quarter slow start but fell behind 56-50 after two Williams free throws with eight ticks left.  Brayden Cruz his a trey for the final score with 2.5 seconds to go but Perry executed an inbounds play after two timeouts to secure the win. Jeff West missed more than 20 three-pointers and made only five, but did get several long offensive rebounds which led to second chance points that kept them in the game.

Garrett Athon had 15 points including hitting all seven of his free throws while Bryce Clements added 11 points, including three huge buckets to pull Jeff West within one possession in the fourth period.  Josh Broxterman also had 10 as the Tigers ended their season with a 12-9 record, which was the most win in the last 14 years for the program. Five talented seniors including four starters ended their career under first-year head coach Matt Simmons, who was forced to play two-thirds of the season without all Big 7 performer Broxterman, while he recovered from injury.

Perry Lecompton played with tremendous poise throughout the contest, like a team that has been to state the past two years and placed third a year ago in Class 3A. Despite losing five seniors who accounted for more than 20 points and 20 rebounds per game, Coach Jared Swafford used a lineup of just six players (and only one senior) whom he refered to their effort as "resilient" to improve the Kaws to 15-6 and keep their season alive. Williams, who came in averaging six points per game this season, was the Player to Bank On and finished with 17 points while Parker Stone had 13 and Blake Farmer added 12 for the best shooting free throw team in the league that made 15 of 19 on the night.     

©2020 MSC Sports
Hiawatha, KS 66434
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