Kinnamon notches 400th career coaching victory

By Steve Sell
February 26, 2014
File Photo-Kendall Shaw

ROSE HILL — Nearly 20 years ago, McPherson High took a chance on a relatively unknown coach who was just starting to perfect his craft at nearby Canton-Galva.

Who would ever have imagined at that time that Kurt Kinnamon would reach 400 victories in a career that still has a lot left in the tank if he so chooses?

The Bullpups’ 71-43 victory over Rose Hill Tuesday pushed Kinnamon’s career coaching record to 400-86, including 375-70 at MHS. He’s edging ever closer to Jay Frazier’s school record of 409 wins in 26 years, and Frazier finished 511-179 overall.

“I told the guys in the locker room that’s a number that came about because of 400 great players that we’ve had,” said Kinnamon, who seemed especially humbled by the accomplishment. “It doesn’t have much to do with me. We pride ourselves and I think we play basketball the way it’s supposed to be played. We get our kids to buy into that and some people, all they see is the loud, gettin’-on kids. Look at the end result. Ask those kids if it’s worth it to play the right way. There’s not very many of them who won’t say that is the way they want to be coached. It’s a tribute to our kids that they want to be coached.”

Like so many of Kinnamon’s other victories at MHS, this one was over early. The Bullpups blazed to a 20-5 first-quarter lead and it was 44-16 at the half.

The bullet point from this game was a remarkable effort off the bench from Spenser Wine, who was 8 of 10 from the field and 5 of 6 from the line for 21 points as he continues his rapid improvement. 

Kyler Kinnamon missed his first shot, then made seven in a row — including five treys — to also finish with 21 points. The MHS starters were able to rest nearly seven minutes in the final quarter since the Bullpups sprinted to such a huge lead.

Alec Santo scored 18 points to lead the Rockets.

MHS, which was 10-0 in AVCTL Division III and is 18-1 overall, now gears up for its sub-state opener a week from Friday at the Roundhouse. MHS will play Buhler for a fourth time this season, with game time 7:30 p.m.

The MHS JVs finished the year 11-5 with a 55-46 win, as Jacob Loecker tallied 13 points and Wine added 12 in a cameo appearance. The freshmen completed a 16-3 campaign by outlasting the Rockets 58-49 as Clayton Gerbrandt scored 16 points, Brock Malm furnished 13 and Caleb Spaich tallied 10.

MHS (71) — McDaniel 1-3, 0-1, 2; Reed 0-0, 3-4, 3; Smith 0-1, 0-0, 0; Loecker 0-2, 0-0, 0; Pyle 1-5, 0-0, 2; Barrett 0-1, 2-2, 2; Kinnamon 7-8, 2-4, 21; R. Horton 3-8, 2-4, 8; P. Horton 2-4, 1-2, 5; Wine 9-10, 5-6, 21; Nutter 1-1, 2-4, 4; Gabel 1-2, 1-5, 3. Totals — 24-45, 18-32, 71. 3-pointers — Kinnamon 5.

Rose Hill (43) — Haydock 0-1, 0-0, 0; Austin 1-1, 0-1, 3; Nolan 0-0, 2-2, 2; Nickel 2-15, 0-0, 6; Lipscomb 0-0, 0-2, 0; Welch 2-7, 0-0, 5; Prieb 3-5, 3-3, 9; L. Santo 0-3, 0-0, 0; A. Santo 7-12, 2-5, 18. Totals — 15-44, 7-12, 43. 3-pointers — A. Santo 2, Nickel 2, A. Santo 1, Austin 1, Welch 1.

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MHS JV (55) — McDaniel 7, Smith 4, Loecker 13, Barrett 2, Malm 2, Wine 12, Gabel 8, Spaich 7.

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MHS 9th (58) — Reifschneider 7, Leaf 7, Malm 13, Hoover 5, Gerbrandt 16, Spaich 10.


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