Wildcats cool off boys
For those who may be thinking the Trojan boys’ basketball team has gotten things turned around, not so fast.
Hillsboro’s three-game winning streak dating back to last year came crashing down Friday night at Haven in miserable winter weather, 64-59.
The Trojans’ fourth loss of the year still kept them a game above .500 at 5-4.
While the boys have been winning, the girls have yet to break out of a funk after sustaining a seventh loss, 54-26—the most points the Trojans have mustered the last three games.
The Wildcats’ sweep sends Hillsboro staggering into the weeklong Trojan Classic with little relief in sight.
The more things change, the more they’ve stayed the same for the Trojans.
Inconsistent offense and taking care of the basketball have been the biggest culprits in Hillsboro’s four-game slide since its last win came Dec. 11 over one-win Marion.
Every loss has seen the Trojans with at least one catastrophic quarter that thwarts beating better teams.
Scoring has not been Hillsboro’s forte, either, with 42 points against Marion a season-high outside of 48 to start the year in a win against Belle Plaine.
Through the slide, 31 points has been the most the Trojans have mustered, averaging 27 while shooting under 30 percent.
It was a woeful 13 percent shooting the second and third quarters, and 23 for the game, combined with 29 turnovers, that did Hillsboro in against the sixth-ranked Wildcats.
Starting games have been easier than closing for the Trojans, too, with Hillsboro only trailing Haven, 17-10, after one quarter.
The Trojans’ deficit stretched to 28-15 by halftime, though, with Hillsboro cooling down to 17 percent shooting the second quarter after opening with 36.
Haven put the game out reach the third quarter, building a 43-17 lead with the Trojans going 1-for-12 from the field, stymieing Hillsboro’s best quarter of 37 percent.
All but six of Hillsboro’s 26 points came from the duo of Kinsey Kleiner and Jessica Saunders, who combined for 20 with 10 a piece.
The Trojans had no answer for the Wildcats’ tandem of Faith Paramore, and Sara Yutzy defensively, whose combined 28 points outdid the Trojans’ entirety behind 36 percent shooting on the night.
Paramore scored a game-high 18 points and Yutzy finished with a double-double of 10 points and 10 rebounds.
Teegan Werth, 4 points; Kleiner, 10; Katie Evans, 2; Saunders, 10.
If there’s talk of the one that got away from the Trojans, it wouldn’t be a surprise.
Hillsboro had a 20-14 lead after the first quarter, shooting a blistering 67 percent from the floor and nearly 60 percent the first half.
The Trojans couldn’t keep it going, though, and Haven was hot on Hillsboro’s tail by halftime, down 34-33.
Haven had one advantage the Trojans did not—19-for-24 at the free-throw line—opposed to 0-for-0 for Hillsboro with Wes Shaw and Darian Ratzlaff battling foul trouble.
Hillsboro’s offensive struggles really struck the third quarter, going ice-cold from the floor for 15 percent.
The Wildcats warmed up to 50 percent shooting then and 40 for the game, overtaking the lead 44-40 to start the fourth quarter.
The Trojans got back on track the fourth quarter, shooting 53 percent from the floor, but Haven’s Jamar Miller and Wyatt Carmichael were a nightmare for Hillsboro to deal with, keeping the Trojans playing catch-up.
Miller and Carmichael combined for 36 points with 18 each.
Miller was 4-for-4 from three, none bigger than the clutch two in the closing 2:00 to spoil Hillsboro’s chance at a win.
The Wildcats’ perimeter shooting burned the Trojans’ defense for a scorching 70 percent on 7-for-10 with Hillsboro going 11-for-27.
Ratzlaff finished with a team-high 17 points, including five triples, and Shaw added 14, with Hillsboro shooting 46 percent for the game.
Jorge Hanschu 6 points; Caleb Rempel 8; Avery Unruh 2; Grayson Ratzlaff 2; Brooks Gardner 2; Caleb Potucek 8; D. Ratzlaff 17; Shaw, 14.
Last modified Jan. 17, 2019