A mismatch on paper turned into a blowout on the court Tuesday as the Hillsboro Trojans opened with 22 unanswered points against Peabody-Burns, en route to a 64-26 win over the Warriors in first-round substate at Hillsboro.
“We didn’t know quite what to expect. We haven’t played Peabody in a long time,” Trojan Christian Ratzlaff said. “We came out with a lot of energy, and everybody started hitting shots.”
Evan Ollenburger was a key contributor to the Trojans’ fast start, connecting on an opening three-pointer, hitting another basket, and adding two free throws in the first four minutes, as Hillsboro took a 12-0 lead.
Then Ratzlaff got hot, scoring on two three-pointers. Avery Franz got loose underneath for a bucket, and Ratzlaff dropped two free throws to increase Hillsboro’s lead to 22-0 with 2:00 remaining in quarter.
A free throw by Xavier Jabary finally put the Warriors on the board with 52 seconds on the clock, but Jordan Faul answered for the Trojans with a three-pointer that gave Hillsboro a 25-1 lead.
“We came out really sharp, played great defense, and moved the ball well,” Hillsboro head coach Darrel Knoll said.
A Ratzlaff fast break bucket extended the Trojan lead to 34-1 early in the second quarter before Gale Schroeder notched Peabody-Burns’ first field goal of the contest.
Hillsboro led 44-9 at halftime, and Knoll rested his starters for much of the second half.
Knoll was pleased that his team maintained a high level of performance despite the lopsided margin.
“We didn’t get sloppy, we played really sharp basketball,” Knoll said.
Ratzlaff was the game’s high scorer with 20 points, followed by Franz with 12, and Faul scored 11.
Hillsboro defeated Moundridge, 62-55, on Dec. 13. They will play in a rematch at 6 p.m. Friday at Berean Academy.