Area Basketball Recap – Jan. 31

By: Aaron Pyle 

Trojans sweep Panthers 

            The Girard Trojans traveled to St. Mary’s-Colgan, Jan 31, for their sixth league game of the season following a previous league matchup against Baxter Springs. 

            For the Lady Trojans, the team comes off a dominating defensive performance against the Lady Lions, Jan. 28, where Girard defeated Baxter 47-33. Sophomore Faith Poland helped the Lady Trojans pull away with the win scoring 12 points for Girard. Following the victory, the Lady Trojans traveled to Colgan to face the Lady Panthers (6-6). 

            The two teams pushed the pace early on in the matchup with both teams exchanging baskets back and forth. The full-court pressure defense from Girard as well as Colgan caused turnovers which then led to easy transition opportunities. Taking a 13-11 lead at the end of the first, the Lady Trojans kept the Colgan offense to a minimum with their relentless defensive pressure. 

            In the second, Colgan came out firing on all cylinders as the Lady Trojans offense began to grow stale. The Lady Panthers would go on a 14-7 run in the second quarter to take a 25-20 lead at halftime credited to Colgan’s ability to knock down free throws. 

            Girard wasn’t ready to back down just quite yet going on an 8-3 run to start the second half. Inside baskets and ball movement proved to be key during the Lady Trojans run. Girard would take the lead back for the first time since the middle of the second quarter with 2:30 left in the third. 

            The fourth quarter proved to be a free throw battle for both teams as the two exchanged shots at the line throughout the final quarter. Girard’s inside attack once again proved to be troublesome for the Lady Panthers as the Lady Trojans began to slowly pull away. Sophomore Serenia Short proved to be the difference in the final quarter with six points helping the Lady Trojans capture a 53-46 victory over the Colgan Lady Panthers for Girard’s fifth consecutive and fourth league victory of the season (8-4, 4-2).

            On the boys’ side, the team came into the matchup against the Panthers (4-8) off a 59-42 loss to Baxter Springs, Jan. 28. Freshman Alex Coester put on his best performance of the season leading the Trojans in scoring with 14 in the loss for the Trojans. 

            Junior Rigby Born provided a major spark offensively for the Trojans to begin the first quarter scoring seven himself. Girard was able to cause turnovers with the half-court press which led to transition opportunities. After the first, the Trojans pushed the lead to double-digits credited to mostly transition baskets.

            The Trojans were able to push the lead even further in the second as the Panthers struggled to get a rhythm offensively. Girard would hold the Panthers to just 12 points in the first half to take a 27-12 lead at halftime. 

            From there the Trojans were able to maintain their ten-point double-digit lead for the remainder of the game capturing a 46-36 victory over the Panthers. For the boys’ team, the win comes as their fifth on the season and second in league play (5-7, 2-4). 

            No stats available for both contests. 

            After the matchup with the Panthers, the Girard Trojans travel to Bulldog territory to face Galena, Feb. 4, in a rematch from their previous contest Dec. 13 where the Trojans swept the Bulldogs. 

Indians dominate Vikings 

            For the St. Paul Indians, the team stayed home at Billy Fager Fieldhouse for a homecoming league matchup against the Northeast Vikings, Jan. 31. 

            On the Lady Indians’ side, the team suffered a 49-43 loss to an undefeated West Elk team ranked #4 in 2A, Jan. 28. In wake of the loss, the Indians faced a struggling Lady Vikings team (2-8) who came into the matchup on a five-game losing streak. 

            The Lady Indians were able to dominate Northeast from the opening whistle as their relentless defensive pressure help the Lady Vikings offensive production to a minimum. St. Paul would capture a 52-21 victory over Northeast capturing the teams’ 12th win on the season (12-3). 

            St. Paul would have three players finish the game scoring in the double-digits; sophomore Emerald Struthers (12), senior Katie Coomes (10), and senior Emily Hutcherson (10). 

            For the boys, the team came into the matchup against Northeast fresh off a narrow 45-43 victory over West Elk, Jan. 28. Seniors Chase Bradshaw and Adam Albertini helped the Indians come away with the win scoring 13 points, respectively. 

            In the matchup against Northeast, the two teams battled for TRL supremacy in a back and forth contest. Outscoring St. Paul 18-10 to begin the game, the Vikings held the advantage. St. Paul would then respond in the second going on a 15-10 run behind senior Chandler Bradshaw’s eight points in the quarter. St. Paul would trail 28-25 at the half. 

            The two teams battled it out in the second half with neither side able to pull away from the other. In the final quarter, senior Kaleb Lemmons would help the Indians pull away behind his six points. St. Paul captured the victory over Northeast defeating the Vikings 64-61 in a closely contested league battle. 

            For the Indians (9-5), the team had four senior players finish the game scoring in the double-digits; Chandler Bradshaw (19), Easton Dent (13), Adam Albertini (13), and Kaleb Lemmons (13). 

            Following the sweep of the Vikings, St. Paul takes a minor break in the action before their next matchup Thursday, Feb. 6 as the Indians travel to Frontenac to face the Raiders in a non-conference battle.