Area roundup: Sweep for Canton-Galva

By Steve Sell
December 21, 2016

The Canton-Galva boys will take a much better spirit into the Christmas break.

Winning will do that for you.

The Eagles scored their first victory of the season on Tuesday with a 29-27 squeaker against Wakefield in what turned into a defensive slugfest.

C-G had opportunities to put it away at the foul line in the fourth quarter, but didn’t take advantage and that allowed the Bombers to hang around. Still, Eagles coach Shane Duncan was pleased to notch that elusive first win.

“2 of 7 from the line in the fourth quarter will lose you a lot of close ones. Fortunately, we played really good defense the entire game,” Duncan said. “We contested their shooters well and held their leading scorer (on the season) scoreless for the game.”

Hunter Pearson was an inside monster for the Eagles with 18 points and he also yanked down 8 rebounds. “They played straight up on Hunter tonight and allowed him to get position on the block,” Duncan said. “We did a great job of getting him the ball in position to score, especially on a night where others struggled with their shot.”

• Canton-Galva girls 44, Wakefield 19 — It was a great night to be an Eagle.

The C-G girls gave up just 6 points in the first half and rode that solid defensive play to the victory.

Kelli Nightingale funneled in 17 points to pace C-G. Autumn Colgin swept the glass like Windex with 13 rebounds and Emma Ruddle also was a force with 11 more.

• Little River boys 40, Elyria Christian 33 — Elyria Christian waited a little too long to get going as despite outscoring Little River 14-6 in the fourth quarter, it came up short.

Little River outscored the Eagles 12-7 in the first quarter and 13-6 in the third.

“We played a good team on the road and we didn't do the little things that are necessary for a road win,” Elyria Christian coach Zach Goodrich said. “We came out on the tougher side of things because of that. Only going to the free throw line twice showed we didn't attack their zone enough.”

Once again, Clay Zeller was a force as he dominated the game with 24 points to lead the winners.

 Aidan Fields led Elyria with 15 points, the only Eagle in double figures.

• Elyria Christian girls 30, Little River 27 — Low-scoring games seemed to be the norm of the night.

“This was definitely another defensive struggle tonight,” ECS coach Greg Fields said. “I was really pleased with the way our girls picked up the intensity on that end of the court as the game went on.”

The Eagles avenged an earlier loss to Little River behind a balanced scoring attack, led by Misha Redenbaugh with 8 points.

“Claire Adamyk and Misha Redenbaugh really helped us get a lead in the second quarter with some nice baskets,” Fields said. “We struggled to hit shots, so when they made a few, it inspired everyone to refocus their efforts defensively.”

Emma McBride led Little River with 8.

• Conway Springs boys 55, Moundridge 40 — A 15-point Conway Springs victory wasn’t expected after the game had been tied 22-all at the half.

Conway Springs outscored Moundridge 21-14 in the third quarter and then the Wildcats scored just 4 points in the final period.

“I’m disappointed in how we executed versus their zone in the second half, using a 2-1-2 extended halfcourt defense,” Moundridge coach Vance Unrau said. “Although it was not something we had seen nor expected, we should be able to adjust and adapt to it. We let missing shots affect how we were defending and that is another thing we need to work through.”

Unrau said playing a team of Conway’s ilk taught the Wildcats a lot.

“Conway Springs has a nice team, athletic all around,” Unrau said. “Size inside and quick, good-shooting guards. I told the kids that we needed to do four things tonight — defend, rebound, play tougher than Conway Springs and play harder than Conway Springs.  All in our control.  But to some level we did not accomplish any of these four things and we must to get where we want to be yet this season.”

Noah Eichelberger kept Moundridge in it with 24 points and Anthony Otte added 9.

• Conway Springs girls 36, Moundridge 27 — Moundridge, ranked No. 2 in Class 2A, lost for the first time this year.

The Wildcats scored only 4 points in the first quarter and 2 in the third as they scored more than half of their points in the second period (16).

Natalie Kaufman led MHS with 8 points, one more than Kassidy Kaufman. 

• Note — Inman, Smoky Valley and Hesston had the night off.