|Broncos advance in RPAC tournament, will play Friday in Trenton|
|Written by Wauneta Breeze|
|Friday, 29 January 2016 16:02|
By Diane Stamm
The Wauneta Breeze
In one of its bigger games of the season, the Wauneta-Palisade boys’ basketball team lost to Paxton Jan. 21 before bouncing back with a win in the first round of the RPAC tournament Saturday.
Both teams were ranked in the Class D2 top ten heading into the contest at Paxton.
The Broncos got off to a hot start, out scoring Paxton 6-2 over the first 2:30 of the game behind baskets by Chase Rathe and Tyler Davis. The Tigers came back to tie the game at 10 and used a buzzer-beating three-pointer to put the Broncos down 10-13 at the end of the first quarter.
WP fell further behind in the second quarter, trailing 12-17, before going on a 14-6 run to end the half. A layup by Brody Nordhausen, the back-to-back steals and layups by Greg Gaston and Cash Yearous kept WP in the contest. A Gaston three-pointer put the Broncos ahead 28-23 at the buzzer.
Following a Paxton layup to start the half, baskets by Nordhausen and Davis put WP up by seven points. The Broncos were unable to find the bottom of the basket and found the game tied at 32 with three minutes left in the third quarter.
Tied once again at 35, Paxton stalled for over a minute, then made a basket with four seconds left to give the Tigers a two-point lead at the start of the fourth quarter.
WP quickly regained the lead in the fourth quarter with a three-pointer by Rathe.
Two baskets by Nordhausen helped tie the game at 42, but Paxton pulled away down the stretch. The Broncos lost the game 45-53.
Coach Dave Kuhlen said, “The difference in the game was that we really did a poor job once they switched to a zone.”
Kuhlen said WP played really well in the first half and also at the start of the second half. , but Paxton does not beat themselves.
“Right now we still do things to beat ourselves,” said Kuhlen. “We are getting closer, but we are still a step away from being elite in Class D2. We are going to work on developing better habits to become elite.”
Gaston and Rathe finished in double figures with 14 and 11 points, respectively.
Davis led WP with 6 rebounds. Rathe had five rebounds and Yearous, Nordhausen and Gaston each had four rebounds.
Gaston had six assists; Yearous had four steals.
Saturday, WP opened the RPAC tournament with a 67-33 win over Maywood-Hayes Center.
Gaston and Nordhausen paced WP in the first quarter when the Broncos opened up a 14-4 lead.
WP dominated in the second quarter, allowing Kuhlen to go to his bench. The Broncos led 37-11 at halftime.
The WP starters rested much of the second half as the Broncos cruised to the win.
Duncan Rector scored 14 points for WP. Gaston had 11 points.
Caid Doetker pulled down five rebounds, Nordhausen grabbed four rebounds.
Gaston had five assists. Rathe and Dalton Harchelroad each had three assists.
Gaston also had four steals. Doetker and Davis each had three steals.
Competition will be tough as the tournament continues. The Omaha World Herlad ratings, released Monday, list Southern Valley as fifth in Class C2, Dundy County-Stratton fourth and Cambridge tenth in Class D1 and Paxton sixth and WP tenth in Class D2.
Tuesday, WP faced a rematch against Paxton in the second round of the tournament. If WP wins it will face the winner of DCS/Maxwell Friday at 6:45 p.m. MT/7:45 p.m. CT. A loss moves WP to the consolation bracket where it would face the DCS/Maxwell loser at 5:00 p.m. MT/6:00 p.m. CT Friday. Win or lose the Broncos will play at Trenton.