Down 12, Bobcats mount rally to defeat Turner, 74-70
Kansas City, Kan. Basehor-Linwood looked like Tim Tebow and the Denver Broncos of 2011: dull for three quarters and then dazzling in the fourth.
The Bobcats, who were down by 12 with 26 seconds remaining in the third quarter, rallied to defeat Turner, 74-70, on Tuesday. They outscored the Golden Bears, 32-14, in the fourth quarter. BLHS (4-1, 3-0) held on for the final 69 seconds, when it took its first lead since the 3:25 mark in the first quarter.
BLHS coach Mike McBride said his team ended up learning something, which is the nice part because losing and having to learn isn’t fun. He added that his team has some fighters.
Chase Younger led the comeback with 30 points — he kept the Bobcats’ heart beating.
“I was so frustrated with the game that I wasn’t paying attention (to his point total),” McBride said. “I knew he was hitting shots. He kept asking for the ball, but I didn’t know where that was going. He’s a winner. He tried getting us going in the huddle.”
McBride kept looking at his team and saw that it was tired. But in the fourth quarter, McBride said the adrenaline finally kicked in because of desperation and they were running all over the court and didn’t look tired. He said that was a lack of being prepared.
The Bobcats scored on 16 of their 23 possessions and forced eight of Turner’s 24 turnovers in the fourth quarter. They pressed for much of the quarter because of the large deficit.
“The efficiency comes from these kids have pressed and played for their whole lives like that,” McBride said. “They’re so court savvy. The only thing is, we’re still searching for some depth and we can’t play like that for 32 minutes.”
The absence of Ben Johnson was apparent tonight. The Golden Bears had two skilled big men and terrorized the offensive glass for the first three quarters.
In that time Basehor-Linwood gave up 15 points on second chances, but rebounded much better over the final eight minutes. McBride said his guards have proven their size all year because they’ve been rebounding the ball.
“Turner’s guys were a little bit bigger, but we weren’t even jumping for the ball,” McBride said. “There’s no reason for one to come through the lane looking for the ball and not really looking to hit us, they were just playing basketball and it would displace us and we’re tougher than that.”
The Bobcats will finish their first half of the season on Thursday with a 2012 sub-state final rematch at Topeka-Hayden, a team, like Basehor-Linwood, that has recent postseason success.
It will mark the final time they will be without Johnson, barring a setback. He’s scheduled to be cleared on Dec. 31 and knows he will see increased minutes as the second half of the season progress.
McBride wants to work him in slowly and have him in shape by Sub-State. However, they’ll have to make due with the size they have in Matt Ogilvie and Tim Sanders.
“Matt Ogilvie is 180 pounds and Tim Sanders weighs more, but he’s only 6-foot-2. It’s going to be tough until Ben comes back,” McBride said.
Sanders and Ogilivie scored 14 and six points, respectively. J.P. Downing also had 14 and Jahron McPherson added all 10 of his points in the fourth quarter.
After the game, McBride and his team talked about McPherson’s performance.
The freshman came in the game at a critical time and knocked down two huge threes. It settled the Bobcats and allowed them to get back into their press.
“We probably don’t win that game,” McBride said. “Those two threes are huge and for a freshman to come in and do that when we needed somebody to step up and do that shows you what type of player we’re going to have for four years.”