|Two more down, one to go as season winds down for Broncos|
|Written by Wauneta Breeze|
|Thursday, 18 February 2016 00:00|
Paul Behrends drives to the hoop during Wauneta-Palisade’s home win over Arthur County. (Diane Stamm | Johnson Publications)
By Diane Stamm
The Wauneta Breeze
The Wauneta-Palisade boys’ basketball team improved its record to 13-7 with only a game against Dundy County-Stratton remaining on the schedule.
WP defeated two Wolves teams, Maywood-Hayes Center 61-30 Friday night and Arthur County 64-32 Saturday.
Playing in Hayes Center, WP took a 7-2 lead, with a basket by Tyler Davis and five-straight points by Greg Gaston.
The Wolves scrambled back to tie the game at 10 and the Broncos left the door open, missing four-of-five free throw attempts as time ran down in the quarter.
MHC took advantage. The Wolves got an offensive rebound and made a basket as time expired in the quarter to put the Broncos behind 10-12.
MHC extended its lead in the second quarter to as many as eight points before WP came roaring back.
WP used a 15-2 run to take back the lead. Gaston led the charge with eight points over the stretch. As MHC got further into foul trouble, WP made the most of its time at the charity stripe. The Broncos made 14 trips to the line and sank 10 attempts, including Rathe making four-of-four and Gaston five-of-eight shots.
The Broncos held a 27-25 led at halftime.
Rathe scored nine-straight points to open the second half before his streak was broken by a MHC layup.
Rathe added five-more points and Gaston a three-pointer to help WP surge to a 44-29 lead at the end of the third quarter.
After only allowing four points in the third quarter, the Bronco defense kept its foot on MHC’s throat and only gave up one fourth-quarter point while the offense scored 17 points for the third quarter in a row.
Rathe scored four more points in the fourth quarter and finished with a team high 24 points. Rathe also pulled down a team high eight rebounds.
Gaston scored 19 points and had five rebounds, seven assists and eight steals.
Nordhausen had six rebounds.
Saturday, though the scores were similar, WP was much more dominant.
Rathe set the pace early, making a three-pointer on WP’s first possession.
Following a basket by Cash Yearous with an assist from Gaston, two steals and layups by Rathe put WP ahead 9-4.
The Broncos closed the quarter with three-pointers by Yearous, Rathe and Gaston to give WP a 18-4 lead.
WP kept the pedal down over the remainder of the half, out scoring Arthur County 22-6.
Rathe remained hot, scoring eight points, and Yearous scored seven in the quarter. Gaston went five-of-six from the free throw line.
Holding a 40-10 lead the WP starters saw limited action in the second half.
After five points by Brody Nordaushen and steals and layups by Yearous and Gaston, WP coach Dave Kuhlen let the Bronco bench finish off the Wolves.
Rathe led WP with 18 points. Yearous finished with 14 points and Gaston 12 points.
Yearous and Caid Doetker grabbed a team high 14 rebounds.
Gaston had four assists and six steals. Yearous had five steals.
DCS is 16-3 heading into Friday night’s contest. The Tigers are currently ranked seventh in Class D1 by the Lincoln Journal Star and Omaha World Herald. After a winning 15-straight games to start the season, DCS has gone 1-3 over its last four games, including two losses to 19-2 Southern Valley.
A win would help the Broncos lock up the top seed in the subdistrict D2-8 tournament which begins Monday.