Colby, Kan. (westernkansasnews.com)–Scott City entered mid season tournament play on Thursday, as they Beavers opened up the weekend facing the Hays High Indians in the 35th Annual Paul Wintz/Tom Bowen Orange & Black Classic in the Colby Community Building. It was the second straight year that the Beavers and Indians faced off. This year, the results would turn out different, as the Scott City girls used a big run early to win 56-35, while the Hays boys never trailed en route to a 64-44 victory.
Scott City Girls 56, Hays 35
Hays would have two early leads at 3-0 and 5-3, and those would be their only leads of the afternoon. Scott City used an 18-0 run over a four minute stretch of the first quarter to take a 21-5 lead with 41 seconds left in the opening frame. The Lady Indians ended a five-minute drought with a basket to pull to within 21-5 after eight minutes of play. After the Lady Beavers led by 16 in the first two minutes of the second stanza, Hays made one push, and would get to within 13-13 with 4:55 left before halftime. That’s the closest they got the rest of the day. Scott City (8-1) would score five of the final seven points of the half to lead 31-17 at the break. Leading 36-23 with 4:19 left in the third period, the Lady Beavers closed out the final four minutes of the quarter on a 14-3 run to lead 50-26 heading into the final frame. Scott City scored the first five points to lead by as many as 29 in the game, and Hays (2-7) closed the game out on a 9-1 run to make the final 56-35.
Scott City had three in double figures, led by Lyndi Rumford with 16 points, Amber Latta had 11 and Emily Weathers added 10. The Lady Beavers were 22-52 from the floor and 7-11 at the foul line. They finished with 10 turnovers and outrebounded Hays 29-23. The Lady Indians were led by Aleyia Ruder with 10 points, as the finished with 21 turnovers. Hays was 15-43 from the field and 3-9 from the charity line.
With the win, Scott City tied the series with Hays at one win apiece, and improved their record in their 25th Orange & Black appearance to 31-43, and 9-15 in the first round. They have also won their third consecutive tournament opening game. Hays, the defending tournament champions, lost their first game in their second tournament appearance.
Coach Sarah McCormick Postgame
Hays Boys 64, Scott City 44
Hays would jump out big and never look back, as they hit a pair of three’s in the first 90 seconds to lead 6-0. Scott City pulled to within 6-3 at the midway point of the first quarter, only to see the Indians go on a 16-3 run over a five-minute stretch to go up 22-6 with 6:25 left in the first half. The Beavers were unable to get a big run in the first half going, as Hays led by as many as 18 late in the opening half at 30-12, before Scott City scored the final four points of the half to pull to within 30-16 at intermission. Hays (7-2) would put the game in doubt in the third quarter, exploding for a 15-3 run to lead 45-19 late in the third quarter, and took a 45-21 lead into the final frame. Their biggest lead would be at 55-27 midway through the fourth quarter. Scott City (4-5) had a 10-0 run in the final period over a minute stretch, got to within 60-42 with 32 seconds left, before falling 64-44. It was a game that featured plenty of Scott City flavor, as 2010 Scott City graduate Alex Hutchins is in his first season with the Hays High Indians, while 2015 SCHS graduate Trey O’Neil serves as an assistant on the Hays staff.
Leading the way for Hays was Jace Linenberger with a career-high 21 points off the bench, and Dylan Ruder added 10. The Indians were 26-49 from the field, and 8-10 at the line. They owned the class 36-18 and had 15 turnovers. Hunter Yager led Scott City with 16 points, hitting four three pointers in the game. The Beavers shot 16-48 for the game, and were 4-7 at the foul line. They committed 14 turnovers.
Scott City sees their three-game win streak against Hays come to an end, as the Indians won in the series for the first time since 2009, when they won 64-55 in the championship semi-finals of the Orange & Black. While the Beavers lead the series 3-2, this was the first game that saw the final end up in double digits. Scott city is now 35-20 all-time in their 19th Orange & Black tournament appearance, and 12-7 in the first round. Hays has won three straight in the tournament and are now 31-18 all-time in their 17th tournament appearance.
Coach Brian Gentry Postgame
Other scores on Thursday saw on the girls side Goodland defeat Highland Park 52-40, Colby rout Green Valley Ranch 95-3 and Beloit hold off Valley Center 39-36. On the boys side, Beloit rallied to defeat Goodand 41-38, Pine Creek defeat Hutchinson 60-44 and Colby edge out Green Valley Ranch 52-45.
Friday’s championship semi-finals will be played in the Colby Community Building, as the Scott City girls face Goodland at 3, and Colby faces Beloit at 6:30. The girls consolation semi-finals at Colby High School feature Hays and Highland Park at 3, and Green Valley Ranch against Valley Center at 6:30. On the boys championship side, Beloit and Hays will battle at 4:45 and Pine Creek faces Colby at 8:15. The consolation semi-finals pit Goodland against Scott City at 4:45 and Hutchinson facing Green Valley Ranch at 8:15.