September 26, 2022

Broncbuster men lose third straight; women upset Cowley


Box Score

Listen to the complete game in our archives section

Arkansas City, KS ( the first time in three years, Brady Trenkle does not have to worry about his offense.

His defense on the other hand, is another story.

Baron Smith followed up his 37-point performance on Wednesday night at Hutch with 22 and nine rebounds, Cowley shot 48 percent, and the Tigers became the third straight team to score 90 or more against Garden City in a 95-82 victory over the Broncbusters at W.S. Scott Auditorium on Saturday night.

“These guys knew the scouting report,” Trenkle explained afterwards. “But we are continuously getting out of our element. They know what they have to do and didn’t do it.”

The Tigers, who came in dead last in the conference in field goal percentage, were red hot early, connecting on 6 of their first 8 shots in building a 14-2 lead. In fact, three different times in the first 20 minutes, Cowley (12-6, 4-3) led by 12.

“We could not get stops,” Trenkle said. “That’s been our issue since we came back from the break. This is the second straight year that we’ve come out in the second half of the season and struggled early.”

Still, Garden City (11-7, 3-4), who opened up by missing 12 out of their first 14 shots, stayed close, and Josh Fleming’s half-court heave at the first half buzzer pulled the brown and gold to within six points 50-44 at the break.

“We had a little momentum even with how poorly we played in the first half,” Trenkle said.

The problem: Garden City never seized it.

The Tigers began the second half on a 13-6 spurt, fueled by Pedro Da Silva’s back-to-back 3-pointers that stretched the lead to 13. The freshman from Brazil scored 11 of his 19 points after half time and was 3-of-4 from beyond the arc.

“Our guys knew he (Da Silva) didn’t like to post, and that he liked to stay on the perimeter,” Trenkle explained. “But he was still wide open.”

Garden City made one more run, thanks to Jabar Ray, who scored 10 straight points off the bench to make it a two-point game 68-66 with 12:35 to go. But that’s as close as Garden City would get. Mason Loewen hit a big 3-pointer, and Cowley closed the game on a 27-16 run to hand the Broncbusters their third straight loss.

“We just have to keep fighting,” Trenkle said. “This is the first time that we’ve had real problems defensively, and we have to fix that before we can get better. It’s a process.”

Fleming scored 22 points to pace Garden City. Diontae Jones added 18 and nine rebounds, but fouled out for the second straight game. JT Bennett chipped in 16, just his second double-figure scoring game in the last seven contests, and Ray tallied 16, his third straight with 10 or more.

Soufiyane Diakite was one of four Tigers in double figures with 13 points, while Jamon Fulton netted 11. He was 9-for-9 from the free throw line.

Tip ins: Jamar Gilbert was 0-for-8 from the field and 0-for-2 from the line…Trenkle said guard Aaron Ray, who broke his wrist following the Butler game back in December, is still about two weeks away from returning; his cast is off…Garden City has now been outrebounded 142-90 over the last three games…It was the third straight game where the opposing team made more free throws (30) than the Broncbusters attempted (25)

Next up: Garden City at Barton County-Wednesday, January 13-7:30 p.m. tip on 99.9 FM;; mobile app: KWKR and tuneinradio app: KWKR




Box Score

Listen to the complete game in our archives section

Arkansas City, KS (’s something about playing away from home that brings out the best in the Garden City women.

Saturday was no exception.

Despite not playing the final three minutes of the second quarter and almost the entirety of the fourth because of foul trouble, Shala Dobbins scored 24 points, Jaymie Bernbeck added a season-high 17, and the Broncbusters led for all but 30 seconds in an 83-75 victory over Cowley County at W.S. Scott Auditorium Saturday night.

“I feel like we have a lot of things in place right now to make a run,” Head Coach Nick Salazar said after the game. “I don’t know what the magic number is to win this conference, but I know this win is the next step.”

Former Derby star Madi Greenwood gave the Tigers a 2-0 lead on a driving layup with 9:35 to go in the first quarter. Dobbins followed with four straight points, and Garden City never trailed again.

The Broncbusters built the lead to double digits late in the second when Bernbeck completed a three-point play and then hit two additional free throws to make it 35-24. Jenna Classen followed with a layup, Bernbeck hit a jumper, and Garden City had a 15-point cushion with 2:30 remaining in the half.

“We have so many options when everyone is on the same page,” Salazar said. “As I’ve always said: we’re not a one-trick pony.”

To show how dominant Garden City was against a team that handed them a 29-point loss in the conference tournament last season-after Rhianna Lainge’s 3-pointer tied the game at 13 with 1:40 left in the first, the Broncbusters responded resoundingly with a 34-17 run to close the half, capped off when Classen was fouled shooting a trey with three seconds left in the period. She connected on 1-of-3 free throws, and the brown and gold led 47-30 at the intermission.

“You have to have kids that buy in,” Salazar said. “These girls have done that, and the results speak for themselves.”

Garden City built that lead to as many as 22 halfway through the third before Cowley (14-4, 5-1) made things interesting in the final quarter.

After the Tigers cut the lead to 14 to begin the fourth, Lainge connected on a triple, then hit another jumper at the 6:10 mark to pull the Tigers to within nine.

Then Devon Branch took the torch. The sophomore from Boerne, TX hit back-to-back 3-pointers to make it a six-point game 77-71 with: 47 seconds to go.

After DaRae Lewis split a pair of free throws, Branch splashed home two charity shots before connecting on a perimeter shot to make it a five-point contest in the final 30 seconds. But the Tigers would not score again. Kavita Akula hit free throws, and the Broncbusters handed Cowley just their eighth home loss in their last 65 games.

Classen scored nine of her 11 points in the first half, Lewis added 10 and seven rebounds and Scott chipped in 10.

Lainge finished with 22 for Cowley, but scored only seven in the second half. Branch netted 17, and Greenwood had 10.

Tip ins: Garden City shot a season best 64 percent (28-of-44)…It was the fifth time this season that the Broncbusters shot 30 or more free throws (36)-they’re now 8-1 in those games…It’s Garden City’s first win over Cowley since a 17-point win over the Tigers at the Perryman Athletic Complex in 2011

Next up: Garden City at Barton County-Wednesday, January 13-5:15 p.m. pregame; 5:30 p.m. tip on 99.9 FM;; mobile app: KWKR and tuneinradio app: KWKR