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Indians Earn First Round Win

St. Francis 49, South Barber 36

The Indians earned their first state basketball victory on Thursday, March 9, with a 49-36 win over Kiowa-South Barber. The South Barber Chieftains (19-4) proved to be a formidable opponent, but Indians never trailed in the contest. The Indians and Chieftains battled closely throughout the contest, with the Indians eventually claiming a double-digit advantage late in the final period. The Indians made 5 of 6 free throws in the final 2:48 to seal the win.

South Barber (SB) won the opening tip, but the possession ended with a turnover. Brock Waters scored a driving basket (plus one), but the Chieftains soon answered with a trey by Gavin Doherty (5' 10" senior) . With both teams appearing to have a few jitters due to state competition, neither team scored again until Waters added an offensive rebound basket at 4:43. Quinton Cravens' free-throws gave the Indians a 7-3 advantage. South Barber's Brian Farney (6' 0' senior) narrowed the gap with a left-corner trey. With the addition of two Waters' free-throws, a steal-two by Taylor Rogers, and basket by Cravens (assist Tate Busse), the Indians took a 13-6 advantage. South Barber scored on an a buzzer-beater stick-back to make the score 13-8 after one quarter of play.

A left-corner trey by the Chieftains' Grant Cantrell opened the second period and narrowed the Indians' lead to two (13-11). Brock Waters and Tate Busse each earned baskets to return the margin to six. After two free-throws by SB's Neal Gugelmeyer, Busse added a steal-two. The Indians called time-out at 4:06 leading 19-13. After returning to action, Cantrell drained another trey. Waters followed with a pair of free-throws. Though the Indians only made 3 of 11 field goal attempts in the second quarter, they still led at halftime (23-19) after the addition of a Cantrell left-wing jumper on a break for SB and two more Waters charity tosses for St. Francis.

Another Brock Waters charity toss opened the second half. The free-throw was not enough to offset the Cantrell trey from the right-wing that followed. The three-ball closed the margin to two (24-22). As they had done from the outset, the Indians kept taking the ball to the goal, drawing fouls, and making free-throws. Quinton Cravens buried three of four attempts from the line and then earned a steal which quickly turned into a Tate Busse three-ball (plus one). The half-minute burst moved the Indians to a 31-22 advantage. At 3:35, Cravens added another free-throw extending the lead to double digits. The Chieftains responded with a right-wing trey and a steal-two (plus one) by Gugelmeyer. This 30-second run closed the gap to 32-28 with 3 minutes left in the third period. Neither team scored in the next 1:40, but eventually the drought was broken by a driving score by Tate Busse at 1:20. Gugelmeyer answered with a drive at the SB goal. Cravens earned a couple more charity tosses; swishing both, but Gugelmeyer scored from the post keeping the game close. As the quarter was closing, Busse drained a deep trey just before the buzzer sounded. St. Francis led 39-32 after three quarters of play.

A Chieftain turnover opened the final period, but Brock Waters was called for a charging foul at the opposite end nullifying the possession. The next Chieftain possession ended with a miss, and Tate Busse dribbled coast-to-coast for a nine-point advantage (41-32) triggering a South Barber time-out at 7:17. When the Chieftains returned to the court their defense moved to full-court pressure. With 6 minutes left, Cole Coggins drained a shot from the high post for SB. After an extended offensive possession by the Indians, Brock Waters grabbed an offensive rebound and tossed the basketball to Brady Dinkel in the corner for a much-needed trey. With 5:30 to go, the Indians were up by ten (44-34). South Barber responded with another high-post jumper by Coggins and called time-out with 4:59 remaining in the game. Neither team would score a basket in the remainder of the contest. The Chieftains would not score again. With the Indians playing good defense and protecting the basketball, St. Francis extended their advantage to 49-36 with the addition of free-throws by Taylor Rogers, Jeremiah Neitzel, and Tate Busse to seal the quarter-final win.

The Indians were led in scoring by Tate Busse with 19 points and Brock Waters with 14. Quinton Cravens added 10, Brady Dinkel 3, Taylor Rogers 2, and Jeremiah Neitzel 1. The Indians shot 38.7% from the field (12-31).  Waters grabbed 10 rebounds to record a double-double in the game.

South Barber was led in scoring by 6' 0" senior Grant Cantrell with 12 points. Neal Gugelmeyer, 6' 0" sophomore, scored 9 for the Chieftains. Cole Coggins, 6' 2" sophomore, added 8 points. The Chieftains made 13 of 39 from the field (33.3%).

The most important stats of the contest were the 9 fouls given up by the Indians that resulted in 5 total free-throw attempts by the Chieftains. The Chieftains made three of the five attempts. St. Francis made 22 of 26 from the stripe for 84.6%. South Barber was called for 18 fouls; many coming on strong drives to the goal by the Indians. Tate Busse and Brock Waters combined for 13 converted free-throws with no misses. St. Francis recorded 17 turnovers; South Barber 18.

With the win, the Indians advanced to the semi-final contest to face Hanover (22-2). Hanover defeated Rural Vista (17-6) 68-46 in their quarter-final contest 

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More photos from this game can be found on the "Photos" page.

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St. Francis 100 College Street St. Francis, KS  67756

Superintendent's Office: 785-332-8182 High School Office: 785-332-8153 Elementary Office: 785-332-8143

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