Pratt sweeps two from Hillsboro on the Trojans’ home court

The Hillsboro basketball teams had opportunities to register wins against the visiting Greenbacks from Pratt on Friday night, but subpar play on the offensive end prevented them from doing so. The Trojan girls lost, 33-30, while the boys lost 61-55 in overtime.

GIRLS—The Trojans’ defense was good enough to win, but it was on the offensive end where trouble raised its head. Neither team shot particularly well in the opening quarter, but when Abby Sechrist scored in the paint with 45 seconds left, the Trojans enjoyed an 8-7 lead at the first break.

Hillsboro didn’t score again until Sechrist drained a mid-range basket at the 5:05 mark of the second quarter. She followed that with a pair of free throws at the 3:14 mark to draw the Trojans to within 13-12. Sienna Kaufman scored Hillsboro’s only other basket down the stretch, but four points from Pratt’s Allisan McGowan gave the Green­backs a 17-14 lead at intermission.

Hillsboro outscored the visitors, 7-6, in the third quarter, but the Trojans still trailed 23-21 as the quarter ended. Neither team pulled together a run in the final quarter, and the game ended meekly with a 33-30 win for Pratt, who missed 14 of 18 free throws in the final 2:15 of the game and still came away victorious.

The loss dropped Hills­boro’s record to 8-7 for the season and 2-3 in league play. Sechrist led the Trojans with 13 points.

BOYS—Hillsboro had its hands full from the start against Pratt. Wes Shaw got the Trojans off to a good start with six points in the first 4:05 of the opening quarter. But when Landen Studer scored for Pratt in the final seconds, the Green­backs held a 13-11 lead at the first break.

The two teams traded points for most of the second quarter. But with Pratt leading 25-21, Darian Ratzlaff hit a 2-point and a 3-point basket is succession to put the Trojans on top, 26-25. Pratt countered a similar scoring combination in the final seconds to claim a 30-26 lead at intermission.

When Ratzlaff nailed a 3-pointer with 1:37 left in the third quarter, the Trojans led, 38-37, after three quarters. The score remained tight as the fourth quarter progressed. When Ratzlaff and Shaw hit consecutive baskets, Hillsboro led 49-46 with 1:53 to go. But Pratt’s Kaden Evert countered with a 3-pointer to tie the game at 49.

Hillsboro’s Elias Werth hit two free throws with 1:12 left in regulation for a 51-49 lead, but Studer drove the lane for two points to tie the game at 51 with 49.6 seconds. Both teams took a shot at their basket before time ran out, but neither shot scored.

Pratt took charge in the overtime period, though, and led 59-53 with 21.4 seconds left. Ratzlaff scored in the lane with 15 seconds to play but Evert sank two free throws with 13.6 seconds left to secure the six-point win.

Ratzlaff led all scorers with 27 points; Shaw, with 10 points, was the only other Trojan to hit double figures. As a team, Hillsboro shot 36 percent from the floor (17-47) while Pratt hit 49 percent (25-51).

With the loss, Hillsboro’s season record is 12-3 and its league record is 4-1.