Archive for Thursday, January 29, 2004

Bobcats still searching for first victory

BLHS boys finish eighth at tourney

January 29, 2004

The Basehor-Linwood boys basketball team has faced some difficult opponents in starting the season 0-11. But on Friday, their biggest problems stemmed not from their adversaries from St. Joseph Central, but from themselves.

The Bobcats committed a discouraging 35 turnovers that the Indians used to fuel a 68-27 victory. The turnovers hamstrung the Basehor offense and often did double damage as they led to easy baskets for Central on the other end.

"We just totally fell apart. I was frustrated and stumped myself," coach Bruce Courtney said. "We had a hard time with their full court press, we wouldn't settle down and let our press break work for us. Some of the guys got frustrated and tried to push harder to make things happen, and that only made it worse."

Early on things didn't look so bad for Basehor. Mike Armstrong hit a jumper to pull them within four midway through the first quarter, but then everything collapsed. Central went on a crushing 25-0 run that spanned the first and second quarters, quickly turning the close game into a rout.

Armstrong finally stopped the bleeding in the second quarter by scoring five straight points on a three-pointer and a long jumper. The junior was the lone bright spot for Basehor, making five shots and scoring 12 points in the first half.

"Mike started off with some open looks and connected on a few, and that gave us a boost off the bat," Courtney said. "But at some point things turned the other way. Mike did a good job, but he's just one guy. Everyone seemed to be on different pages."

Armstrong hit another three, and Cody Herbster made a putback to cut the deficit to 40-17 at halftime and allow the Bobcats to entertain thoughts of a comeback.

But Armstrong cooled down in the second half, and the Bobcats couldn't make up any ground, scoring just 10 points in the second half. As the press continued to give the Bobcats problems the frustration began to boil over for the first time all season, with players bickering briefly at the free throw line.

"We have to remind them that its not just one person, it's all a team and unity's important," Courtney said. "I know these guys all get along well, but it's just the desire to play well and win that makes it hard, when under duress, to keep composure. I know it's not personal, it's just the effects of a frustrating season."

Courtney added that with his team not having one particular star it was proving difficult for it to find an identity to stabilize it when things got rough.

"We seem to flow to one side or the other, jump around with who's hot. We haven't found anybody we can say, 'ok, feed the ball to this guy,'" Courtney said.

Armstrong finished as the leading scorer Friday with 12, while Herbster led in rebounds with seven. Garyn Gorup added four blocks.

The Bobcats next game is at Sumner Academy Friday.

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