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Coach Knoll nets 500 wins

Staff writer

In the first home game of 2018, the Hillsboro girls’ basketball team overcame a slow start and first-half deficit Tuesday to down the Hoisington Cardinals, 36-24.

Trailing 17-16 at halftime, Hillsboro overtook Hoisington in the second half and hung on to win and lift their record to 6-3.

The boys had little trouble with the Cardinals behind a career-night 32 points from Elias Werth, crushing Hoisington, 81-55.

The victory marked Trojan coach Darrel Knoll’s 500th win in 30 years. Hillsboro improves to 8-1 on the year.

Trojans sweep Larned

Trekking two hours west to Larned, a long trip was well worth it Friday night for the Trojan basketball teams.

Despite a rugged night shooting, the girls team defeated the Indians 35-28, while the boys had little trouble winning, 71-49.

With the pair of victories, the girls are now 5-3 on the year while the boys are 7-1.

Girls

An Arctic blast that struck the area last week was metaphorically hampering the girls, who battled a 15 percent shooting en route to falling behind 10-8 after one quarter.

The Trojan defense saved the day, though, with Hillsboro getting 18 points off 24 Larned turnovers.

Sienna Kaufman scored 8 points, including giving Hillsboro its first lead shortly before the break, 16-14.

Icy shooting that hindered the Trojans hit Larned the second quarter, but the Indians were able to knot the game at 16 by halftime.

The third quarter was a seesaw battle, but Hillsboro was able to go up 26-22 heading down the final stretch.

Hillsboro’s 19-12 second half proved to be the difference, even with 11-for-46 shooting.

“The second half we did a nice job of defending,” coach Nathan Hiebert said. “We also started showing a little more patience and got better shots the second half.”

Hillsboro limited the Indians to 29 percent on the night and 18 in the second and third quarters to pull away.

Trojan freshman Teegan Werth paced all scorers with 10 points and Abby Sechrist supplied seven.

Boys

The Hillsboro boys showed no signs of road-wear, sprinting to a 17-11 lead in the first quarter.

The feisty Indians stayed on the warpath, though, overtaking the lead with a 9-3 run, near the midway mark of the second quarter.

Foul trouble and a scoring lapse slowed the Trojans, but they were able to grab a 37-28 halftime lead.

Even with their toughest quarter of the night, shooting 26 percent, a balanced scoring attack from Elias Werth, who finished with a game-high 18 points, along with Wes Shaw, Darian Ratzlaff, and Caleb Potucek, allowed Trojans to pull away in the third quarter.

Hillsboro’s blistering 75 percent from the floor in the fourth—46 percent on the night— foiled any chance of Larned staging a comeback.

The Trojans held Larned to a modest 35 percent from the field while forcing 22 turnovers that led to 26 points.

Shaw added 14 points, and Ratzlaff and Potucek combined for 24.

“I was pleased with our intensity and effort,” Trojan coach Darrel Knoll said. “We played solid defense and overall, we moved the ball well on offense. We came out strong in the third quarter, which was the key to controlling the game the rest of the way. It was an excellent win on the road against a good team.”

The Trojans will remain home Friday for a meeting with the Haven Wildcats.

Last modified Jan. 11, 2018

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