Daily Archives: March 5, 2017

What a turnaround! Belle Plaine goes from 3-win season to sub-state champions

Belle Plaine wins the Fredonia sub-state as Caney Valley players look on. (Photo by Dawn Sturgeon).

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Last summer, the Belle Plaine team was coming off a 3-18 season. Joe Newman was the sixth coach in six years, and Wellington had an opening for a head coaching job, Newman’s hometown.

Newman decided to stay in Belle Plaine, and eight months later, the Dragons are going to their first state tournament in 11 years with a 15-8 record.

Belle Plaine would beat Caney Valley 79-73 in overtime in Fredonia Saturday evening in a thrilling game. And now the Dragons prepare for Galena (20-3) on Thursday at 3 p.m. at the Hutchinson Civic Center in the Class 3A state tournament.

Belle Plaine would beat Eureka 66-47 in the first round, Douglass 68-61 and then Caney Valley. It has been quite a week.

Newman stated to his team his purpose going into sub-state:

Before our first round sub state game vs Eureka, during our pre game meeting, I put on the board “How bad do you want it? and what are you willing to do to get it?”  I continued to write that on the board before each sub state game. And each game, the guys would step up and make an unselfish play that would decide the outcome. With us being the number 1 seed we knew we had a great opportunity to do something incredible, but we were going to have to fight for it.”

Conway Springs boys lose to Cheney 69-60 in sub-state championship

Conway Springs Cardinals

Sumner Newscow report — It was a tough ending to a great season for the Conway Springs boys basketball team. Conway Springs was eliminated by Cheney 69-60 Saturday evening in the sub-state championship in Cheney.

The Conway Springs boys finish the year at 18-5.

The Sumner County Cardinals could not overcome a 50-38 advantage at the end of the third quarter. Cheney opened with a 17-13 first quarter lead and held a 30-26 advantage at the half. In the third quarter, Cheney would outscore Conway Springs 20-12 leading to the 9-point win. 

Caldwell boys take care of business against Attica, heads to Dodge City

Andrew Dent (25) and Colten Ward react to winning over Attica in sub-state championship.

by James Jordan, Sumner Newscow — Unlike the Caldwell girls, the boy Bluejays were expected to win Saturday night. Caldwell did just that eliminating the defending state champion Attica team 43-37 on its home court Saturday.

Caldwell would hit five of six free throws in the final 44 seconds to hold off Attica. The Bluejays now move on to the state tournament next week where it will play Axtell in the first round.

It was a home game for Attica, but Caldwell brought a lot of people and filled up half the gym.

Caldwell coach Jason Marlin said he really appreciated how fans follow the team, and it helped having them in the hostile atmosphere of a road game.

Attica played strong defense and led most of the first half. Caldwell managed to lead most of the second half and held off a late charge.

Caldwell girls stun No. 2 ranked Cunningham – heads to State

Caldwell pulls off one of the biggest upsets of the night across Kansas by knocking off Cunningham.

by James Jordan, Sumner Newscow — One knew that Caldwell was going to own this sub-state in Attica, when the Lady Bluejays would shock No. 2 ranked Cunningham for a sub-state championship.

Both Caldwell teams are going to the Class 1A Div. II state tournament in Dodge City after winning in the finals of the substate tournament in Attica Saturday. The girls pulled off a huge upset knocking off a team from Cunningham that had lost only one game all year, winning 43-41.

Caldwell used a new defense and dominated the third quarter. The Lady Bluejays built an 11-point lead and then held off two strong counter punches from Cunningham down the stretch. Hannah Steuwe grabbed a rebound in the final seconds as Caldwell was clinging to a two point lead. She missed the front end of a one and one with two seconds left, but it was the rebound that ended the threat.

With all the theatrics at the end, the biggest play of the night still may have been at the end of the first half.

Wellington boys fall to Mulvane in 2017 sub-state championship game 65-57

A.J. Snipes scores 28 points for Wellington in sub-state championship, but it wasn’t enough to stave off Mulvane.

By Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — The Mulvane boys brought a sudden end to Wellington’s sub-state party with a 65-57 victory in the Rose Hill championship game.

Mulvane will go to its first state tournament in basketball in 30 years. In a battle of 8-13 teams, the Wildcats would break this game open when senior Dalton Blaine hit a trey midway through the third quarter to give Mulvane a 35-34 lead. That would spark an 11 point run to give the Wildcats a 43-34 lead.

It would be a lead for which the Crusaders could not recover.

Wellington finishes the year at 8-14. But the team has a promising future as the core of its team should be returning next season.

The Crusaders and Wildcats were playing tit for tat early. Mulvane opened with a 10-4 first-quarter lead, but Wellington came right back on a 10-4 run. A Mulvane trey at the end of the quarter, gave the Wildcats a slight 15-14 lead. 

Wellington girls knocks off Rose Hill 38-35 for sub-state championship

Wellington hoists the sub-state basketball crown Saturday evening.

by Tracy McCue, Sumner Newscow — Wellington head coach Eric Adams seemed to ponder when asked whether this sub-state championship win was more special than the two others before.

“They are all special,” he responded. “This one is very gratifying. The girls really responded. They really deserved this win.”

The Wellington girls will be going back to the Class 4A State Tournament in Salina for the third time in six years after beating Rose Hill 38-35 on its home court Saturday in a game that matched the hype. Wellington girls have their work cut out for them. They play Shawnee Mission- Bishop Miege (19-3) in the first round on Thursday at 8:15 p.m.

The Wellington-Rose Hill game was the final in a four-game battle with the Rockets and the third sub-state championship battle in as many years. Rose Hill won in 2015, Wellington won it in 2016. This was the rubber match. During the regular season, Rose Hill would take two out of three. But this game here was bigger than all of them.

Wellington would triumph when Rose Hill’s Kayna Simoneau’s 3 point attempt bounced off the rim.

“Boy that shot stayed in the air for a long time,” Adams said.

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