The storylines for the McPherson High-Buhler basketball games here Friday are like a full-course meal, they’re that delicious.
Take your pick — Homecoming, “Think Pink” Night, and, of course, the two games themselves with league and sub-state ramifications overflowing.
Let’s start with the girls game and fans are asked to wear pink in honor of cancer awareness. This is a special night for the girls, who have donated thousands of dollars in previous years for cancer awareness and the check presentation is always emotional and a lovely sight to see.
The Bullpup girls, if they play anywhere near their normal standards, should post a comfortable victory as Buhler is in the Post-Steffen era. The Crusaders figure to be MHS’ first-round sub-state opponent, but it’s on Buhler’s homecourt which always gives it a puncher’s chance.
Of course there will be homecoming with the usual excitement for students. Once that is completed, the boys’ game is a monster.
MHS has a one-game lead over Buhler in the league, so a Bullpup victory wraps up a share of the D-III championship. Of course for the MHS faithful, winning league is important, but it’s only an appetizer because, of course, the season is all about making state and that has been the mentality for a long time. They don’t hang banners in the Roundhouse for league championships like other schools do, you have to be a state champion to earn that distinction.
The MHS boys quietly have strung together seven wins in a row after what for them was a wretched 6-4 start. The kickstart came in the McPherson Invitational and they have been riding the wave ever since. On Tuesday, the Bullpups shot the ball with conviction with 12 3-pointers, but they also had 19 assists as they are getting better at sharing the basketball. There’s still too much dribbling at times for my liking, but the ball hasn’t been getting stuck as much as it’s being swung from side to side.
The boys have two potential land mines next week as Circle is a solid team and playing in Towanda is not easy. Augusta comes here Friday and the Orioles seem to have the components to be dangerous.
Friday should be the most exciting night of the year at the Roundhouse to date. With all implications taken into consideration, I think McPherson fans should be there from the start and bring your best throat.