MHS steamrolls Hutch for summer cage title

By Steve Sell
July 04, 2017

The Hutchinson Salthawks must have felt like McPherson High had 10 defenders on the floor Monday night in the varsity boys championship basketball game in the McPherson College Summer League.

Everytime a Hutch player had possession, he found himself trapped by two or three long-armed Bullpups and the end result often was an MHS steal and layup.

Unlike last year’s title game when Hesston upset the Bullpups, McPherson High steamrolled Hutchinson 52-19 and showed why it will probably again battle with Bishop Miege for state supremacy.

“I thought we did a good job of being alert and our pressure was really good,” MHS coach Kurt Kinnamon said. “We got every loose ball and everybody did a good job. The kids know how to play. We did a good job of sharing the ball, had some nice assists and really did well on the glass.”

MHS led only 11-6 halfway through the first half, but turned up the heat for some easy steals and layups to lead 28-12 at the break. The Bullpups allowed only seven points in the second half as the inexperienced Salthawks had no answers for MHS’ length.

Ben Pyle and Jake Alexander scored 15 points apiece and both were dynamic around the basket. Kinnamon actually split up his team into two fives and didn’t necessarily have his starting five together.

“We are more mature basketball-wise than they are right now,” Kinnamon said. “(New Hutchinson coach) Ted (Webster) knows what they need to work on and they’ll get better. They have some good pieces.”

The game wrapped up another season for the Summer League.

“We had tremendous participation this summer,” League director Tim Swartzendruber said. “I thought this was one of the best summers we’ve had in terms of the level of players, the coaching and the sportsmanship. It’s just been a very good summer.”

In other games on Monday, Berean outlasted Sterling 39-31 for third place in the varsity boys division and Inman was a 52-41 winner over Trinity Catholic for fifth. In the other division, Hesston defeated Elyria Christian School 38-26 for the title, Smoky Valley outlasted El Dorado 37-35 for third and Hillsboro cruised past Nickerson 59-35 for fifth.