Archive for Friday, December 10, 2004

LHS boys fall to Seaman; girls show progress in second loss

December 10, 2004

— Lansing High boys' basketball coach Don Allen knew size could be a problem for his team this year if it ran into a team with multiple big guys.

Sure enough, the Lions (1-1) ran into just such a team Friday afternoon in the semifinals of the Bonner Springs Metro Prep Tip-off when they faced Topeka Seaman.

The Vikings (2-0) boasted TWO 6-foot-7 players, a 6-foot-4 guy and four more at 6-foot-3 - including their starting point guard. In contrast, Lansing's tallest starters - juniors Jeff Slater, David Kern and Matt Warner - all are 6-foot-2. That spelled plenty of trouble for the Lions, who lost 68-39.

Lansing will play for third place at 2:45 p.m. Saturday against the loser of the Atchison-Savanah game. Seaman will meet the winner for the championship at 6:15 p.m.

"I think you step up in class a little bit with some of the Topeka schools," LHS coach Don Allen said. "You look at the league they play in. They're competing against a state champion or state-placer every other night, and I think the level of competition is a little bit different. We were outsized a little bit. They played defense extremely well and took us out of offense a little bit, and obviously we shot the ball very poorly."

Seaman blitzed Lansing from the opening tip. The Vikings constantly worked the ball inside and blended in some flashy play from their guards as they built a 17-1 lead in the first quarter. LHS was 0-11 from the field in the opening quarter with its lone point coming on a Slater free throw.

"A lot of it had to do with their defense," Allen said, "but a lot of it had to do with our mental state coming into the game. I don't necessarily think we were scared, but we were a little bit intimidated. Then they pushed us around there early and took control of the game and knocked us back on our heels."

Lansing pulled within 11 on a put-back by Slater in the second quarter but trailed 30-18 at halftime.

The Lions continued to pluck away early in the third quarter. A put-back by junior Chris Wagner trimmed the deficit to 10 points, but Seaman answered right back with an 11-4 run that put the lead out of reach.

Seaman's Dallas Blocker led all scorers with 17 points 8-for-10 shooting. Adam Holthaus scored 13 for the Vikings and Mark Herbster added 12. Slater was Lansing's lone double-digit scorer with 14 points. Cody Mohan added eight points and Matt Warner had seven.

"We're disappointed we're not getting to play in the late game tomorrow night," Allen said, "but it's a great tournament. You get three games early. Obviously you find out your strengths and weaknesses. Last night we found out some of the things we do well. Tonight we found out some of the things we don't do well. Looking back at it after three games we're going to have a pretty good idea of our team and we'll be ready to start league next week."

Harrisonville 53, Lansing girls 49

The Lansing High girls' basketball team's second outing of the season didn't result in its first win, but it did signify overnight progress.

Twenty-four hours after being trampled by Lawrence Free State, the Lions bounced back with a wire-to-wire thriller against Harrisonville (Mo.). They played drastically better against the Wildcats, but didn't have quite enough in the tank at the end and dropped their second game of the Bonner Springs Metro Prep Tip-off at Bonner Springs High School.

Harrisonville 53, Lansing 49.

"The kids played with a lot of fire, a lot of emotion," first-year coach Keith Andrews said. "We were in the game. We were in tune. We were thinking."

The Lions did everything right except slow down Harrisonville senior guard Leslie Teal who scored a game-high 28 points - including the Wildcats' first 18 of the game.

You read that right - the first 18 points.

"We had a man on her most of the time she was scoring," Andrews said. "My hat's off to her."

Take out Teal and this might have been a much different ballgame. If not for Teal, Harrisonville never would've been in the game, let alone won it. Lansing roared out to a 9-2 lead before Teal drained her first of four three-pointers and jump-started the Wildcats. Two short jumpers and another three late in the first quarter gave Harrisonville a 12-11 lead after the first quarter.

LHS junior forward Amanda Radovich found a groove in the second quarter as she hit all four of her shots and sank a free throw. Her effort kept Lansing within two at halftime.

"Amanda Radovich had a huge game," Andrews said of Radovich's 20-point effort. "She matched (Teal) point-for-point with her inside game."

Junior Rachel Darrow sparked the Lions early in the third quarter as she made a layup, drained a three-pointer and sank a runner in the lane that bumped the LHS lead to 34-31. Harrisonville responded, though, and took a 41-40 lead early in the fourth quarter.Freshman Katie Nietzke's runner put Lansing back on top, but the Wildcats answered again.

As time ticked down, the Lions showed their first sign of panic and began forcing shots. They also made just one of seven free throws in the final 2:40.

"There at the end we rushed some shots," Andrews said. "We didn't need to shoot the ball so quick, but they're learning that now."

The game was tied at 49-all with 1:24 left, but an 18-footer by Harrisonville's Emma Hartzler and a layup by Kayli Pozniak put the game out of reach.

"Our most important thing for us is to build on this game so the next time it's close like that we know what to expect and we know how to get through it," Andrews said.

Lansing will play for seventh place at 1 p.m. Saturday against the loser of Bonner Springs and Atchison.

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