KANSAS — On the first day of the boys' basketball Tri-County Holiday Tournament Tri-County pulled away from Martinsville for a 67-48 win to start the day. WSS tangled with Westville in a game that featured seven ties and no lead larger than six points until the final quarter. The Hatchets won 69-61.
“It (the win) hopefully gives us confidence" said Tri-County coach David Smith. "We have been struggling a little bit to finish games. A lot of the games we have played have been close games. We just have not won any. I tell the kids to keep fighting. That second half was what we need every half and if we do that we will be tough."
Hutsonville/Palestine outscored Chrisman 27-18 in the third quarter to win 58-52.
The final game of the day saw Paris lead by 16 going into the fourth quarter when Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond rallied to within two before falling 52-47.
The tournament is to continue Thursday with games starting at 9 a.m. on the final day of pool play games.
Paris 52, Arthur-Lovington-Atwood-Hammond 47
It looked like Paris was going to win easily as they took a 16-point lead on a pair of free throws by Bryce Krabel with 1:05 left in the third. The Tigers still led by 16, 45-29 when the Knights got things started off well in the fourth quarter with a three-pointer by Colton Romine and a steal and layup by Kobe Wells. Kayin Lawson made a basket for the Tigers for a 47-34 lead when the Knights, who fell to 2-6, started a 12-1 run with a pair of free throws by Wells and a basket by Will Cohan off a feed from Romine. Romine made two free throws with 3:36 left to make it 48-42. He scored again with 2:05 remaining and blocked a shot. Wells's basket made it 48-46 with still 1:45 left.
Paris led 50-47 when the Knights had a three-point attempt go off the rim and Krabel, who led all players with 23 points sealed the game with two free throws with 11.1 seconds left.
Romine finished with nine points and 11 rebounds, while Wells and Austin Romine had 10 points each.
Zach Burger had 16 points for the Tigers, who improved to 3-7.
The Knights had 19 turnovers but outrebounded Paris 35-21.
Paris scored 17 of the first 23 points in the first half, taking a 17-6 lead on a basket by Burger, who had eight points at the half.
A-L-A-H battled back to within six, 20-14, on a bucket by Colton Romine. The Tigers led 24-16 at the break with sophomore Krabel leading the way with 11 points.
The Knights shot 38 percent from the field as did Paris in the first half.
A-L-A-H is to play at 3 p.m.Thursday against Westville and again at 7:30 p.m. against WSS.
WSS 69, Westville 61
WSS, which improved to 6-4, took the lead for good on a three-pointer by Chase Thies with 5:58 left in the first half for a 20-18 lead. The game was tied four more times, including after the first half as Westville's Skylor Elliott scored the last six points, including a steal and layup to end the half, which tied the game at 32.
The Hatchets did not lead by more than eight in the third quarter and held a 48-44 advantage heading into the final period. WSS led 51-47 when they went on a 14-6 run over a span of 3:41 to take a 65-53 advantage. The Tigers got to within six, but no closer. The run started with a three-pointer by Beau Bennett, who led the Hatchets with 20 points. It was 56-51 when Beau Bennett stuck another three in the basket and his third and final three-pointer of the quarter made it 62-53 with 3:25 left. Thies made one of two free throws and Christian Kessler scored on a pass from Isaac Kramer, who led WSS in rebounds with nine, for the 12-point lead.
"We locked down on defense a little better in the second half," said WSS coach Austin Robinson. "That no. 2 (Tylan Stricklett) killed us all game. We did a lot better at just avoiding him even trying to catch the ball. We settled down on turnovers (only had eight), which have been a problem for us all season. We started just working to get a good shot and when we get the shots we want we usually do a lot better and that helped us out in the second half."
As for the play of Beau, Bennett Robinson said, "We have not shot super well as a team and having a guy coming off the bench like Beau Bennett and Jackson Miller hitting big shots from off the bench sort of separates decent teams from good teams and good teams from great teams. We have got to get that and having that from Beau and Jackson today was huge for us."
Thies was also in double digits with 17 points for WSS, including 10 in the second quarter.
“Paris is going to be tough challenge for us as is A-L-A-H. We got the win and hopefully we will be ready to go Thursday.”
Tri-County 67, Martinsville 48
Martinsville led 28-26 after freshman Grant Haenig made one of two free throws to start the scoring in the second quarter. Tri-County tied the game for the third and final time on a basket by Dillon Tweedy before the Titans took the lead for good with a layup by Dylan Campbell, who finished with a team-high 23 points, including 10 in the pivotal third quarter. The Bluestreaks were within two with 3:15 left in the third after a pair of free throws by Boyce Snearly. Tri-County took over scoring the final 11 points of the period, including six by Campbell with one off a pass from Blake Lee as he drove down the middle of the lane.
Martinsville's Dalton Rollings, who finished with a team-high 29 points, including 14 in the final quarter, ended an 0-for-11 field goal stretch for Martinsville and a 24-5 run by the Titans with a basket at the 5:15 mark of the final period. Tri-County led by as much as 21 before winning by 19.
"We talked about it the locker room at half that we needed to shut down Dalton Rollings," said Smith whose team switched for a 2-3 zone to man-to-man in the second half. "We put Mason (Hutchinson) on him and he didn't score in the third quarter. Blake Lee got a chance to guard him also. We wanted to make sure we shut him down. We emphasized getting the ball in the middle to Drew Campbell or whomever anybody going down the lane. The reason is because we were 3-of-17 from the three-point line in the first half. We had to get the ball inside and we did a very good job in the second half.
After scoring the first basket of the game Martinsville went 5:22 without a point, while Tri-County reeled off 12 straight points, including eight by Dylan Campbell. The Bluestreaks battled back to within three after eight unanswered points by Rollings, including a three-point play. Tri-County ended the opening quarter with a putback by Donavon Smith for a 14-9 lead.
Tri-County improved to 4-8 on the season and is to play Chrisman at 9 a.m. Thursday and at 4:30 against Hutsonville/Palestine in the tournament.
Martinsville, 3-8, is to play Hutsonville/Palestine at 10:30 a.m. and Chrisman at 1:30 p.m. Thursday.