Hugoton, Kan. (westernkansasnews.com)–Playing in their final games before mid-season tournament play next week, Scott City and Hugoton would battle in a pair of evenly-matched games Friday night at Hugoton High School. When the night finished, it would be a split, as the Lady Beavers pick up a big road win in a 50-41 triumph, while it was late heroics for the Eagle boys, winning 67-65 late in the game after blowing a 15-point lead.
The last few years have been lopsided games in favor of Hugoton. This year though, was much different. The Lady Eagles still do have the firepower, and showed it early one, taking a 12-8 first quarter lead. While Scott City kept chipping away at the lead, Hugoton kept it by the narrowest of margins. Trailing 17-14 in the middle of the second quarter, the Lady Beavers went on a 6-0 run to take their first lead at 20-17 with 3:23 left in the first half. However, the Lady Eagles would respond with four straight to take a 21-20 lead with 2:09 left in the half. Scott City would find a way to finish the half on a 7-2 run, capped off by a Katie McGonagle three pointer to give the Lady Beavers a 27-23 lead.
In the second half, Scott City (7-1, 4-0 GWAC) scored the first four points to lead by eight at 31-23, and eventually 34-26 with 4:51 left in the third frame. Hugoton would get to within four at 34-30 midway through he period, before the Lady Beavers finished the quarter on a 7-2 run to take a 41-32 lead into the final period. After Scott City picked up a 44-32 lead one minute into the fourth quarter, the Lady Eagles made one final push. Hugoton (4-4, 2-2) used a 7-0 run over a three-minute stretch to get to within 44-39 with 3:59 left in the game. The Lady Beavers closed the final 3:43 of the game on a 6-2 run, hitting four of six free throws down the stretch to pick up the win.
Three Lady Beavers were in double figures, led by Bailey Latta and Emily Smith with 12 points apiece, while Macie Price had 11. Scott City was 10-16 at the free throw line and finished with 17 turnovers. Hugoton was led by JoHanna Rawlins with 17 points. The Lady Eagles were 10-14 at the charity line, and had 25 turnovers. Hugoton outrebounded the Lady Beavers 35-24.
With the win, Scott City snapped a 13-game losing streak to Hugoton, dating back to January 3, 2012, when they won 35-33. They also won their first game in Hugoton since 2011, which ironically, was a nine-point win at 44-35. This is the fastest the Lady Beavers have been to seven wins since their 13-0 start to the 1994-95 season.
Coach Sarah McCormick Postgame
It’s not how you start sometimes, it’s how you finish. The boys game could truly live up to that. With three lead changes and one tie, it was mostly dominated by Hugoton throughout. The Eagles built up a 14-10 first quarter lead, leading by as many as six in the opening period. Their lead would eventually grow to 13 at 32-19 with 1:05 left in the half, before the Beavers put up one last basket before the break to pull to within 32-21 at the break.
The second half was full of runs. Scott City (3-5, 2-2 GWAC) would put together the first run with back to back three’s to get to within 32-27 in the first minute of the second half. Hugoton responded with nine straight to take a 41-27 lead with 5:24 left in the third quarter. The Eagles saw their lead diminish briefly to nine at 47-38 with 2:47 left. They reacted with the final six points of the third quarter to lead 53-38 heading into the final period. That run by Hugoton (4-4, 2-2) looked to do in Scott City, but the Beavers had different plans. They started the final period with a 7-0 run to pull to within 53-45 with 6:48 left, and would eventually get it to 58-51 with 3:37 remaining in the game. The Eagles would go up 62-51 with 2:37 left.
That’s when the comeback began. A Jordan Horn three-point play with 2:31 remaining in the game would spark a Beaver comeback, pulling them to within eight. Scott City got a Marshal Faurot three pointer to pull to within five, and a quick steal and layup by Horn, and all of a sudden, the Beavers were back to within three with 1:12 left at 64-61. A Scott City foul put Hugoton at the line, and they would hit one out of two free throws to go up 65-61 with 1:11 left. The Beavers got a layup to pull to within two at 65-63 with just over a minute left, and the Eagles would turn the ball over in the back court. Scott City took advantage, as Parker Vulgamore’s hook shot in the paint tied the game at 65 with 47 seconds remaining. Hugoton would run the clock down, and saw Mitchell Hamlin drive in and hit a runner in the lane with 4.5 seconds left to give the Eagles a 67-65 lead. The Beavers had one more chance, and they got a clean look. Horn’s three pointer from about 25 feet on the right side just went off the rim, and Hugoton won their second straight game.
The Eagles had three in double figures, led by Carlos Montiel with 21, Damian Lewis with 20 and Mitchell Hamlin added 16. The Eagles were 15-22 at the foul line and had 15 turnovers. Scott City got a career-high 20 points from Marshal Faurot, 14 from Jordan Horn and a career-high 12 from Zach Carson. The Beavers hit all three of their free throw attempts and had 11 turnovers. Hugoton won the rebounding edge 32-21.
With the win, Hugoton has now won the first meeting of the series for the third straight year, and it was the first win over Scott City on their home court since March 2, 2004, when they beat the Beavers in the first round of sub-state. That losing streak had reached seven on their home court against the Beavers.
Coach Brian Gentry Postgame
Up next for Scott City is the 33rd Annual Paul Wintz/Tom Bowen Orange & Black Classic in Colby on Thursday. The boys will play at 3 pm against Fountain Ft. Carson, while the girls will take on Pine Creek at 4:45, with both games in the high school. Hugoton begins play in the Sterling Invitational on Tuesday. The girls will take on Southeast of Saline, while the boys face Hutchinson Trinity.