Boys 2-1, girls 1-2
The Trojan Classic proved to be successful after all for the Trojan basketball teams with the boys posting a 2-1 finish for third place and the girls capturing seventh place, going 1-2.
The boys upended Holcomb in Friday’s third-place game, 46-34, and the girls snapped a six-game slide for their third win of the year, whipping Remington, 61-44.
The boys had their title hopes spoiled Thursday, dropping a 50-44 semifinal game to eventual runner-up Riley County.
The same problems that have hampered the girls continued Thursday with Republic County sending them to the seventh-place game with a 35-21 punch in the gut.
Hillsboro will return to action Friday after a short rest, hosting the Sterling Black Bears.
Since the Trojans’ last win Dec. 11 against Marion, the season’s been bumpy with Hillsboro struggling in all phases of the game against good teams.
The Trojans finally got to take out their frustrations on the Broncos behind season-highs in both scoring, and shooting with 61 points and 39 percent from the field.
Hillsboro beat Remington in all quarters with the Broncos only trailing 14-12 after one.
Remington stayed in the Trojans’ rear-view mirror the second quarter, but Kinsey Kleiner sparked eight straight points during a 15-3 run, which gave Hillsboro a 34-29 lead at halftime.
Kleiner scored a career-high 19 points, including all eight of Hillsboro’s during the spurt.
Scoring’s been a sore spot for the Trojans all year with Hillsboro rarely getting more than two players in double figures.
That changed Friday with Teegan Werth adding 18 points to go along with a team-high seven assists, and Jessica Saunders chipping in 10 points and seven rebounds.
Outside the trio, the Trojans got scoring help from four others with Addie Berens scoring eight points.
“I was proud of several things during this game,” coach Nathan Hiebert said. “I felt like we showed a lot more composure and brought scoring from several girls.
“Remington is really strong on the glass and hurt us first scoring on second chance points. We did a lot better the second half, Emersyn and Jessica led the way we rebounding. We were able to play 10 and felt that all of them contributed.”
Despite a combined 15 rebounds from Saunders and Funk, the Broncos still beat Hillsboro on the glass, 43-34, and 17-12 in offensive rebounds.
The Broncos’ edge allowed them to outscore the Trojans on second-chance points, 14-8.
Hillsboro’s hot shooting 46 percent the first half cooled down to 29 the second, but its stingy defense forced 28 turnovers to keep the Broncos trying to catch up.
The much-needed victory lifted Hillsboro to 3-9 overall.
Scoring summary: Werth 18 points, Emersyn Funk 2, Kleiner 19, Mallory Ediger 3, Saunders 10, Berens 8, Tuesday Weisbeck 1.
Beating the Holcomb Longhorns is always a good thing since they thwarted Hillsboro’s bid at becoming back-to-back champions 27 years ago.
The Longhorns have fallen on hard times this year, though, and Hillsboro’s 16-2 third quarter put Holcomb in a deep hole it could never get out of.
Hillsboro hardly started the game on the right foot, opening ice cold from the floor, shooting 23 percent.
The Longhorns never caught up, though, outside briefly leading 6-5 with just 3:00 left in the opening frame.
The Trojans couldn’t get any traction the second quarter, either, clinging to a 17-16 lead at the break with Holcomb suffering 18 percent shooting and 24 on the night.
Hillsboro broke out of its slump the second half, heating up to a burning 57 percent shooting and 42 for the game, leaving Holcomb in the dust with a 15-0 run.
Wes Shaw scored a game-high 18 points, pulling down a game-high seven rebounds to lead the Trojans to a 20-12 edge in points in the paint and 38-31 rebounding.
Hillsboro’s seventh win pushes it to 7-5 on the year.
Scoring summary: Jorge Hanschu 3, Caleb Rempel 7, Avery Unruh 2, Brooks Gardner 5, Caleb Potucek 5, Darian Ratzlaff 6, Shaw 18.
Last modified Jan. 24, 2019