Ottawa’s Ojeleye too much for Basehor-Linwood in Bobcat Invitational final
Basehor-Linwood boys basketball players held the second-place trophy on Saturday night following the Bobcat Invitational.
It was like a hot potato — nobody wanted to hang on to it too long.
Players watched as BLHS Athletic Director Joe Keeler awarded Ottawa High School the championship trophy.
In a tip-your-cap moment, they clapped when the award was issued to the Cyclones for winning 56-49 and for Semi Ojeleye, who was named the tournament’s most valuable player.
He was a difference maker — scoring 30 points and grabbing more than 10 rebounds in the game.
Ojeleye went 9-of-10 from the free throw line in the fourth quarter to seal the win for the Cyclones.
Ojeleye was Ottawa’s only player to score in double figures, and the leading scorer for both teams.
Ryan Murphy and Colin Murphy each scored 14 points for the Bobcats.
When the game and ceremony were over, Basehor-Linwood players took stock of the loss.
“They outplayed us tonight,” Ryan Murphy said. “They hit us in the mouth and we were not ready for it.”
They talked about how they didn’t handle Ottawa’s zone in the game well enough.
“They came after us tonight and were physical against us,” coach Mike McBride said. “By the time we figured it out, it was too late. We hope to see it again on down the road.”
They never surrendered a lead built by outscoring Basehor-Linwood 16-7 in the second quarter and a 26-20 halftime lead.
Ojeleye scored seven points in the quarter, and on defense, Basehor-Linwood struggled to handle the Cyclones’ zone.
Brad Waterman made a three-pointer late in the half to make the halftime score 26-20.
The Cyclones maintained the lead in the third quarter as the two teams were relatively even in scoring. Colin Murphy hit a three-pointer late in the quarter, making it a 38-31 lead in the fourth quarter.
In the fourth quarter, the Bobcats never cut the lead to less than six points.
With about three minutes left in the quarter, Downing also dislocated his elbow. While playing press defense on the Cyclones’ guard, Downing dislocated his elbow and the Bobcats were a player short the rest of the play. The game was stopped when the Cyclones Dallas Natt was fouled.
Downing would later return and make a three-pointer to make it 50-46 with less than two minutes left in the game.
On the next possession, Ojeleye turned the ball over via a five-second violation and the Bobcats had a chance to score and make it a one-possession game.
Basehor-Linwood’s Colin Murphy missed a three pointer at the other end of the floor.
After Ottawa missed back-to-back foul shots, Basehor-Linwood’s Downing missed a three point shot at the other end of the floor, and the Bobcats were forced to foul Ottawa’s Kaden Shaffer who made 1-of-2 foul shots to make it a five-point game.
At the other end of the floor, Ben Johnson missed a three-point shot and again the Bobcats were forced to foul. The game developed a rhythm of Basehor-Linwood missing three-point attempts and then being forced to foul on defense.
The Cyclones were 6-of-8 from the foul line late in the fourth quarter. The Bobcats hit four shots from 3-point range in the quarter with Colin Murphy making a pair and guards Ryan Shaffer and JP Downing each making one in the quarter.
With the loss, Basehor-Linwood finishes second in the tournament. The team now plays host to Lansing on Friday in a game that could go a long way toward determining the Kaw Valley League Champion.
Following the game, players also talked about the room the team has to improve.
“The thing with this team is we haven’t come close to reaching our potential yet,” junior forward Ben Johnson said.
While the team wanted to win the tournament, players also stressed the idea that their main goal remains the same: success in the state tournament.
“It is great to win the tournament,” Colin Murphy said. “But our main goal is to win the state tournament.”
If the Bobcats are to win state, they could see Ottawa again in the state tournament.
This is another elite Class 4A program that Basehor-Linwood has played this season. The team has also played Sumner Academy and Topeka Hayden, along with Bonner Springs. While these two teams could meet again in the future, Ottawa’s foul shooting decided the game in the fourth quarter.
The following were scorers for both teams in the game.
Ryan Murphy, 14; Colin Murphy, 14; Ben Johnson, 8; Brad Waterman, 3; Chase Younger, 4; Ryan Shaffer, 3; JP Downing, 3.
The scorers for Ottawa were Conner Goedert, 6; Alex Hasty, 6; Dallas Natt, 4; James Peoples, 2; Semi Ojeleye, 30; Kaden Shaffer, 4; Austin Blaue, 2.
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