Lansing girls win third straight; boys fall to Mill Valley
The Lansing High girls' basketball team will spend its two-week holiday break feeling good about itself after extending its winning streak to three games as it drilled Mill Valley, 53-41, on Friday night at the LHS gym.
The Lions (3-2 overall, 2-0 Kaw Valley League) dominated the contest from start to finish and now will have two weeks to savor their third straight lopsided victory before returning to action on Jan. 4 with a 6 p.m. game at Tonganoxie.
Lansing burst to an early 10-5 lead over Mill Valley as senior point guard Monique Richardson knocked down two early jumpers and a pair of free throws. The Jaguars (1-2) trailed by just four after the first quarter, but senior Emily Goodlin's eight second-quarter points helped press the LHS lead to 29-20 at halftime.
The Lions blitzed Mill Valley with a 15-5 run to open the second half that essentially put the lead out of reach with 10 minutes remaining. Richardson's sharp shooting continued in the second half as she poured in six more points, while junior forward Amanda Radovich heated up and scored nine points in the half. LHS led by as many as 22 points in the game and coasted to the easy victory.
Lansing shot the ball well and made 46 percent of its shots (23-for-50), but its defense is where it really shined. Goodlin dominated the boards for the fifth straight game, and Radovich was equally strong. Richardson, sophomore Riann Deere and freshman Katie Nietzke pestered the Jaguars' guards all night.
Another bright spot that LHS coach Keith Andrews pointed to was the play of senior Melissa Casto, who started in place of junior small forward Rachel Darrow. Darrow, the Lions' best outside shooter, missed the game for a family trip to Mexico, and Casto was called on to fill the void in the starting lineup. Andrews said Casto filled in admirably.
Richardson led the Lions with a season-high 14 points on six-for-seven shooting. Radovich added 11 points and Nietzke chipped in nine in the victory.
Megan Niemann was Mill Valley's only player in double-figures with 10 points as the Jaguars made just 29 percent of their shots (17-for-58).
Mill Valley 51, Lansing boys 45
Lansing High boys' basketball coach Don Allen said he was pleased with the way his squad played - for the most part - Friday night in its 51-45 loss to Mill Valley.
Still, it would've been nice for the Lions if the end result could've been reversed. Instead of heading into the holiday break with a two-game winning streak and unblemished Kaw Valley League record, they'll enter the two-week layoff with a 2-3 record and 1-1 KVL mark.
The Lions opened the game on a strong note as the raced to a 13-5 lead behind a pair of three-pointers by junior Matt Warner and a trey from junior Chris Wagner. LHS led 15-6 after the opening quarter and seemed poised to run away with the victory.
Things changed in the second quarter, however, as Mill Valley (3-0, 2-0) sank four of its first six shots of the quarter and pulled within four. Lansing made just one of eight field goals in the quarter - a jumper by Wagner - and led just 20-18 at halftime.
A pair of free throws by junior David Kern and another three from Warner gave Lansing a 25-20 lead midway through the third quarter, but that's as big of a lead as the Lions would muster in the second half. Mill Valley quickly responded. Senior David Woods drained back-to-back three-pointers and gave the Jaguars a 28-25 lead. LHS rallied and tie dthe game at 32-all, but the Lions never led again.
Mill Valley took a 34-32 lead into the fourth quarter and consistently led by at least four points the rest of the way. The Jaguars took their largest lead of the game at 46-40 with 2:36 to go in the game and Lansing never caught up. The Lions pulled within three points with 50 seconds left on a pair of free throw by Kern, but it wasn't enough.
Wagner led Lansing with a team-high 14 points. Warner and Jeff Slater added nine apiece, Kern had seven and sophomore Jeff Jackson added six points off the bench.