The Hillsboro High School basketball teams opened the 2011-12 season with a pair of comfortable wins at Lyons in the first round of the Moundridge Preseason Tournament. The Trojan girls posted a lopsided 69-29 conquest while the boys finished with 65-47 margin.
GIRLS — Hillsboro sputtered offensively in the first quarter against the Lions, but still led 11-3 at the first break despite 5-for-21 shooting from the field. But their defense more than made up for their offensive jitters, forcing 11 turnovers.
Hillsboro shot about 65 percent from the floor the rest of the game, building a 31-14 lead by halftime and a 54-22 margin after three quarters.
Nine Trojans contributed points by the time the game was over, with Tena Loewen leading the way with 20. Addie Lackey added 14 and Stephanie Sanders 10 as the Trojans finished the game shooting under 50 percent (28-for-57) from the field. Their defense forced 33 turnovers.
BOYS — The Trojans came out sharp on both ends of the court in the first half, posting a 6-0 lead before the home team finally scored. Lyons rallied to pull to within 13-12 late in the opening quarter, but a three-point basket by Christian Ratzlaff, a layup off a steal by Evan Ollenburger and then a free throw moments after that gave HHS a 19-12 lead at the first break.
Hillsboro scored the first six points of the second quarter on baskets by Brett Weinbrenner, Jesse Allen and Josh Wiebe to go up 25-12, then led by as much 39-21 late in the half before a pair Lyons free throws trimmed the margin to 39-23 at intermission.
Hillsboro started the third quarter in a shooting funk, missing its first seven shots. Lyons countered with a three-pointer and a pair of two-point baskets to cut the lead to single digits at 39-30. Hillsboro called a timeout with 5:16 left in the quarter, then promptly launched a 12-1 run that pushed the lead to 51-31 before Lyons scored one more basket before the final break.
The home team never mounted a serious challenge in the final quarter as Hillsboro expanded its advantage to 20 points with a minute and a half left, 62-42.
Ratzlaff led a balanced scoring attack with 12 points. Jesse Allen and Brett Weinbrenner each added 10 points as nine team members found their way into the scoring column. For the game, Hillsboro settled for 41 percent shooting (25-61) after shooting just under 50 percent in the first half (15-31). HHS forced 25 turnovers while committing only 11.?
COMING — The Trojans will play the next two rounds of the tournament at Moundridge, starting with games Thursday against Garden Plain. The girls game will begin at 4 p.m. and the boys? game at 5:30 p.m. The final round will be played Friday night, as Hillsboro faces off with the host team. The girls? game is scheduled for 7 p.m. and the boys? for 8:30 p.m.