The Hillsboro basketball teams will be assigned the early-game slots for the final night of the Moundridge Preseason Tournament. That became the Trojans? fate Thursday night as they dropped their Round 2 games in pool play to Hesston. The girls lost 39-33 while the Trojan boys lost 63-36.
The girls continued their pattern through the first three games of the season by competing well in the first half only to see the game slip away from them in the second half.
With four players contributing points, Hillsboro staked a 12-7 lead after one quarter and was up 24-19 after one half. Dakota Kaufman had 11 points by intermission.
The game clearly turned in the third quarter. Hesston raised its defensive intensity, forcing Hillsboro into eight turnovers and 1-for-2 shooting through the first 6:15 of the quarter. By the time Allie Faul broke the funk with a 3-pointer from the top of the key, Hillsboro was trailing 33-24. The score was 33-29 at quarter?s end. Both teams had trouble scoring the in final quarter as the Swathers hung on for the six-point victory.
Kaufman failed to score in the second half, but was Hillsboro?s leading scorer with 11 points.
In the boys? game, Hillsboro jumped to a 6-0 lead through the first two minutes, but when Hesston finally scored at the 3:44 mark, the game began to implode for the Trojans. Hesston scored 12 unanswered points to lead 12-8 by the end of the quarter. Jesse Allen broke Hesston?s run with a basket with three seconds left.
It only got worse for the Trojans in the second quarter. Hillsboro committed seven turnovers and shot 0-for-5 from the floor as Hesston?s lead ballooned to 29-8 with 1:44 left in the half. The halftime score was 31-11.
Nathan Vogel stepped up to score 11 points in the second half, but the Trojans never made a serious run at the Swathers en route to the 27-point loss. Vogel finished as Hillsboro?s leading scorer with 13 for the game.
With those losses, both Trojans teams find themselves with an 0-2 mark in the tournament and 0-3 for the season. Both teams will play for fifth place — the girls beginning at noon and the boys to follow at 1:30 p.m. Their opponents will be determined Friday night.