DERBY — Survive and advance.
That’s what McPherson’s seventh-grade boys did on Saturday as they outlasted Derby 32-29 in the first round of the Pioneer League Basketball Tournament. They now play No. 1-seed Salina South at 5 p.m. Tuesday in the second round.
Eli Pyle spurred the Bullpups to victory with 11 points. MMS is now 9-5 on the season.
“We picked up a huge win today beating a Derby team that beat us earlier in January,” MMS coach Tim Hein said. “After giving up 18 points in the first quarter, we made some adjustments and they executed those changes perfectly. Our defense got better and better as the game went along. We ended up only giving up two points in the fourth quarter. Max Alexander really came on in the second half. He was masterful at driving and drawing multiple defenders and then finding the open man. Eli Pyle hit three big 3-pointers. Jayton Alexander and Brycen Labertew fought like men against bigger players under the basket.”
MMS (32) — Pyle 11, M. Alexander 8, J. Alexander 5, Hein 3, Rinker 2, Powell 2, Labertew 1.