ORIGINALLY WRITTEN DON RATZLAFF
Amber Hefley turned her first starting role into a starring role Tuesday night. Her 17 points led Hillsboro High School to a 51-41 win over Halstead.
Pressed into the lineup when team leader Jill Hein sat out because of illness, the 5-7 junior was 7-of-10 from the field, including 2-of-4 from behind the arc. Twelve of her points came in the second half and helped keep a pesky Dragon team at bay. Hefley also grabbed eight rebounds and dished out three assists.
“She did a great job,” coach Becky Carlson said. “She handled the ball well, did a good job of shooting and was really aggressive to the basket.”
The Trojans, 14-1 and ranked No. 5 in Class 3A by the Wichita Eagle, stretched an 11-8 lead after one quarter to 22-12 by halftime with a 9-0 run during the second quarter. Andrea Peachey contributed five Trojan points off the bench.
Hillsboro led by 16 points after three quarters, 40-24. But that proved to be the Trojans’ biggest lead of the game as Halstead, only 2-13 on the season, kept pace with the Trojans on the inside scoring of sophomore post Lindsey Miles, who finished with a game-high 19 points.
“It seemed like we executed as well as we needed to, but we just couldn’t get as many shots to fall toward the end,” Carlson said.
As a team, the Trojans were 20-of-42 from the field. Hefley’s scoring support came primarily from Angela Herzet, Shannon Kroeker and Peachey, each of whom scored eight points.
Peachey was 2-of-2 from behind the arc and 3-of-3 overall with four rebounds in a reserve role.
“Anytime you miss a starter, it’s hard,” she added. “I just felt everybody stepped in and did what they needed to do. I’m proud of the kids. I thought they played a good game.”
The win improved Hillsboro record to 6-0 in the MCAA Mid Division.
Coming-Hillsboro played for the Mid Division title in Tuesday’s game against Sterling.Results of the contest are available today on the Free Press Free Line (947-3363) and the Free Press Web site (www.hillsborofreepress. com).
On Friday, Hillsboro travels to Ellinwood to face the 3-11 Eagles. The following day, the Trojans will host Wellington at Tabor Gymnasium.
The Trojans will travel to Lindsborg Tuesday to play the Vikings, then close their regular season next Thursday with a makeup game against Hesston on the Swathers’ home court. The Hesston game was postponed because of last week’s storm.
All the games start at 6:30 p.m.