Final Highlights: GCHS vs. Wichita North
Garden City, Kan (westernkansasnews.com)-Before the season began, the so-called experts believed that with Conner Frankamp (now at Kansas) gone, Wichita North would be a better team. Some laughed; others believed. Saturday night proved those prognosticators weren’t crazy after all.
Tarius Williams scored a game-high 27 points on 8-of-11 from the field-leading four Redskins in double figures en route to an impressive 78-59 victory over Garden City at the New Garden in the 6A sub state championship game.
“We didn’t do a good enough job on the glass,” Buffaloes Head Coach Jacy Holloway said after the game. “We allowed way too many offensive rebounds.”
12 in fact, and Wichita North (12-10) out rebounded Garden City (13-9) 31-20.
“We kept yelling for them to get to their spots,” Holloway explained. “North was just better tonight.”
They might have been better, but the first half proved that the Buffaloes could hang with the defending City-League champs. And after Caleb Tram’s two-handed dunk tied the game at 30 with 1:30 remaining in the first half, anything seemed possible. But that would be the closest they would get the rest of the way.
The Redskins scored the next seven points to take a seven-point advantage. And not even Hunter Delgado’s buzzer-beating layup at the end of the second quarter could stem the tide.
The onslaught continued at the beginning of the third when Zach Beard drained a three from the short corner. The next trip down Williams buried a 15-foot baseline jumper forcing Holloway to burn a timeout.
When play resumed, Tristyn Villa connected on a triple from the right wing followed by Williams transition layup-making it 11 straight Redskins points after half time-extending the lead to 16 with 4:30 to play in the third quarter.
The lead would swell to as many as 18 before the Buffaloes finally made a run to end the third. Delgado’s three as he was hit by John Bogle from the right wing splashed through the nets-cutting the lead to 15. The senior though couldn’t connect on the four-point play, and Wichita North led 60-45 heading to the fourth.
The momentum seemed to be shifting back to the home team when Emilio Parr converted on an and-one-layup, pulling the Buffaloes to within 12 60-48 with over seven minutes to play in the game.
After Sean Bernard’s tap in extended the lead to 14, Luis Rodriguez connected on his only field goal to make it a 12-point contest. After Gage Loy missed two free throws, Delgado hit a three from the left wing to bring the Buffaloes to within 62-53 with 5:15 left. North would take it from there.
Following a Gary Squires timeout, the Redskins responded with nine straight points, and after Williams hit two free throws, the North lead ballooned to 71-53.
“They (North) did everything right tonight,” Holloway said. “And we rushed things down the stretch. We thought we were taking 10-point shots.”
Beard, a first-team all-city league player, scored 17 points for the Redskins. Bernard, whose already signed to play football at Missouri State chipped in 11 and seven rebounds, while Loy notched his fourth double-double of the season-10 points and 12 boards.
Delgado led the Buffs with 16 points on 6-of-11 shooting. Tramp scored 14 and pulled down eight rebounds.
Notes: With the win, Wichita North earned their third consecutive trip to the 6A state tournament; it also assured them of their third straight winning season-first time that’s happened in more than a decade.
Final Stats: GCHS vs. North