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Indians Split Games With Wallace County

On Tuesday evening, February 20, the St. Francis High School basketball teams wrapped up their regular season schedule in Sharon Springs. The Indians split their contests with Wallace County, losing the junior varsity boys game 25-27 and winning the varsity contest 59-52. Both games were close throughout, and the outcome of either game was in question until the late moments of each contest. The varsity ends the regular season with a record on 15-5. The junior varsity team compiled a record of 9-3.

St. Francis struggled through a low-scoring first half in the varsity game. Both teams played aggressive defense, but neither team found the basket with any regularity during the first half. St. Francis earned many good shots, but just could not get them down as the teams battled to a 19-19 tie at halftime.

Andrew Noone (6' 1" Jr.) scored the first basket of the varsity contest on a steal-two. K.C. Krien's offensive rebound and assist led to a Tate Busse trey from the left-wing giving the Indians a short-lived lead. Noone's driving basket placed the Wildcats back in front. A runner in the lane by Seth Johnson (5' 11" Sr.) gave WC a 3-6 advantage. Busse's assist to Wyatt Hackler on a fast-break pulled the Indians within one, and Hackler's steal-two returned the lead to St. Francis (7-6). Johnson's drive soon erased the Indian's advantage, but Tayton Weeter scored from the post on an assist from Dalton Straub placing the Indians back in front. After a trading of free-throws by Trevor Medina (6' 1" Jr.) and Adam Krien, Brady Dinkel scored on a drive giving the Indians their largest lead of the game (12-9). The final bucket of the quarter was added by Carlin Springsteel (6' 2" Sr.) for the Wildcats. St. Francis held a slim 12-11 lead after one period of play.

The back-and-forth action would continue. The teams traded lead changes 8 times and had 6 ties in the first 20 minutes of the contest. Seth Johnson scored a driving basket on the Wildcats' first possession of the second quarter. Adam Krien added a free-throw tying the game at 13-all. Trevor Fischer (5' 11" Jr.) contributed two free-throws after being fouled following an offensive rebound. A stick-back basket by Dalton Straub tied the contest at 15-all. After a charity toss by Trevor Medina, Wallace County called time-out with 3:17 left in the half. After returning to the action, WC earned a left-wing basket by Luke Johnson (5' 11" Jr.) to take a 3-point lead (15-18). A basket by Straub from the right-baseline preceded a free-throw by Fischer. Two free-throws by Tate Busse tied the game again at 19. WC used another time-out in the last minute of the half, but neither team scored again. The teams went to their locker rooms tied at 19-all.

Luke Johnson opened the second half scoring for WC. Dalton Straub followed with a pair of free-throws. An assist by Tate Busse set up a baseline score by Straub giving the Indians a 23-21 advantage. At 4:34, Trevor Medina tied the contest one last time with a drive. On the next possession, St. Francis answered with a driving score by Wyatt Hacker to take the lead for good. In the next few moments, the Indians would add two right-wing treys by Brady Dinkel and an offensive rebound basket by Straub. The Indians exploded for a 10-0 run in a minute and 41 seconds that would essentially decide the game. Seven straight points by Medina closed the margin to 33-30 before a shot in the lane by Tayton Weeter stopped the Wildcat run. Dalton Straub then drew a charge on a driving Wildcat further swinging the momentum. Jesse Baxter's assist to Busse set up a fast-break score, and Weeter's assist led to a baseline jumper by Straub. The Indians had scored the final three baskets of the period to lead 39-30 going into the final quarter.

Trevor Medina opened the final stanza with a deep right-wing trey. After a score by Dalton Straub, Medina added three free-throws narrowing the advantage to 41-36 before an assist by Tate Busse led to a score by Jesse Baxter. At 6:01, Adam Krien picked up his 5th foul and left the game. Carlin Springsteel chipped in a free-throw, and Medina's drive at 5:17 reduced the Indians' lead to four (43-39). Tayton Weeter then added a free-throw and Busse a drive. At 4:19, Medina swished another deep trey moving the scoreboard to 46-42. The Wildcats immediately called time-out. On the next Indian possession, Weeter added a free-throw, but Medina followed with a left-wing three-ball. With 3:40 to go, the score stood at 47-45. Twenty seconds later, Brady Dinkel sank one-of-two from the stripe, but at 3:13, Medina's drive further narrowed the lead to one (48-47). The Indians badly needed a score--and they got it. Straub nailed a free-throw area jumper on the next Indian possession. Busse followed with a steal-two at 1:40. Straub added another free-throw moments later. The SF lead had grown to six (53-47). A 1:05, Medina scored again on a drive. Medina had accounted for 18 of the 19 Wildcat points thus far in the quarter. Because they were behind, the Wildcats were forced to foul to preserve the clock. With 26.2 seconds remaining, Straub made one-of-two. After a Wildcat miss, Busse rebounded and was fouled. The foul was ruled intentional, and Busse sank both free-throws. The Indians received the basketball after the foul shots, and Straub's assist led to a transition basket by Weeter (plus one). With 12.2 seconds left, Weeter's free-throw moved the scoreboard to 59-49. Fischer's buzzer-beater trey made the final score 59-52.

St. Francis was led in scoring by Dalton Straub with 18 points. Tate Busse added 13. Tayton Weeter and Brady Dinkel each added 9. Others scoring for St. Francis were Wyatt Hackler 6, Adam Krien 2, and Jesse Baxter 2. The Indians made 14 of 26 from the stripe, were called for 15 fouls, and had 10 turnovers.

Junior Trevor Medina led the Wildcats scoring with 29 points (27 in the 2nd half).  Seth Johnson and Trevor Fischer each added 6. The Wildcats tallied 21 fouls, 9 turnovers, and made 12 of 20 from the line.

St. Francis will play Trego Community in the first round of the 2A Sub-State Tournament in St. Francis on Tuesday, February 27. Tip-off is scheduled for 7:00 p.m.

In junior varsity action, St. Francis jumped out to a 8-0 lead getting a post-basket by Tayton Weeter (assist Colton Neitzel), a free-throw by Neitzel, a baseline drive by Weeter, and a steal and assist by Weeter leading to a break-basket by Conner Keller (plus one). Late in the quarter, five Indian substitutes entered the game and played throughout the second period. St. Francis only earned two more points, two free-throws by Draven Houtman, before halftime. St. Francis led 10-7 with 1:40 left in the second period, but the Wildcats earned a right-wing trey by freshman Landon Johnson, a steal-two by Trevor Fischer, and an offensive rebound basket by sophomore Corbin Smith to end the half. Wallace County scored 14 points in the second period (6 by Fischer) to lead 14-10 at halftime.

The deficit grew to 10-17 on a left-corner trey by Smith to open the second half. Tayton Weeter then found Jesse Baxter open for a high-post score. Conner Keller scored on a cut after a nice assist by Colton Neitzel (14-19). Smith followed with a stick-back bucket. At 3:10, Keller's left baseline shot narrowed the deficit to 16-19. A short time later, Keller scored a fast-break basket (plus one) on an assist from Weeter. The game was now tied at 19-all. Aiden Mai added a left-wing basket to the Wildcats' side of the scoreboard. On the Indians' trip down the floor, Keller was called for a charge driving to the basket giving the basketball back to the Wildcats. After a Wildcat miss, Weeter's assist led to a score by Richard Johnson on an out-of-bounds play. The Wildcats called time-out with 17.5 seconds left in the third period to set up a final shot, but a turnover led to an empty possession. The team's were tied at 21 after three quarters of action.

Trevor Fischer scored the first three points of the final period on a free-throw and post basket. Approximately halfway through the quarter Wallace County called time-out for strategy. At 3:40, Connor Keller was fouled on a drive and made 2-of-2. Fischer answered with a stick-back basket. At 1:10, Keller went coast-to-coast narrowing the margin to one (25-26). After an empty possession with approximately 30 seconds to go, St. Francis was forced to foul when they could not force a turnover. The Indians fouled twice in the final 6.4 seconds to finally send WC to the line. Junior Josh Daily made 1-of-2 with 4.1 seconds to go to move the score to 25-27. St. Francis failed to connect on a final shot attempt, and Wallace County won the junior varsity game 25-27.

Connor Keller scored 14 points to lead the Indians. Others scoring in the junior varsity game were Tayton Weeter 4, Jesse Baxter 2, Richard Johnson 2, Draven Houtman 2, and Colon Neitzel 1. The Indians made 7 of 8 from the stripe, had 8 fouls and 18 turnovers.

Wallace County was led in scoring by Trevor Fischer with 11 points. Corbin Smith added 7. The Wildcats made 2 of 6 from the line, totaled 5 fouls and 13 turnovers.

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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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