Tabor began its week on a high note, defeating Bethel in North Newton 77-42 Thursday night. The young Bluejay squad was unable to capitalize on the momentum Saturday, losing 91-65 to McPherson.
Bethel?Jumping to an early 10-0 lead, Tabor picked up its first win since Jan. 7.
Tabor survived a first-half run that pulled the Threshers to within 19-15 with 6:30 to play in the first half. Tabor outscored Bethel 13-4 to end the half 32-19.
Tabor opened the second half with a 10-2 spurt. Less than four minutes into the second half, the Bluejays built the lead to 42-21. Tabor went up by 30 at 65-35 with 5:16 remaining.
Tabor showed a new defensive look Thursday, running a full court and three-quarter court press at times. Coach Micah Ratz?laff said his team had been struggling defensively so he tried something new.
?We worked on the press all week,? Ratzlaff said. ?We?ve been struggling defensively. I wanted to give our guys a chance.?
The press led to Bethel turning the ball over 19 times and shooting a mere 31.8 percent from the field. Tabor finished with 12 fast-break points compared to two for Bethel.
Damon Dechant led Tabor with 13 points, six rebounds and three assists. Michael Janzen finished with 10 points, including 2-for-3 shooting from beyond the arc.
Other scorers for Tabor were Jason Hett (8), Lawson Kingsley (8), Cody Arnold (7), Ryan Chippeaux (7), David Loewen (6), Rob Moore (4), Daniel Hann (4), Clay Shewey (3), Gavin Serene (3), Curtis Dick (2) and Conner Hampton (2).
McPherson?Shooting 60 percent from the field and 63 percent from behind the arc, McPherson improved to 10-2 in KCAC play and 17-4 overall with its drubbing of Tabor Saturday.
McPherson opened the game with six straight points. After Tabor scored its first basket, the Bluejays were able to set up a full court press, forcing turnovers and poor shots by McPherson to close the gap to 10-8.
After an 8-2 McPherson run, frustration set in on the Bluejay bench. Coach Micah Ratzlaff was whistled for a technical foul, down 18-10 with 10:22 left in the half.
Scoring eight more points in the next two minutes, McPherson continued to build its lead to 26-10 with 8:45 left in the first stanza. McPherson ended the half with a 40-25 lead.
More frustration set in for Tabor in the second half, as McPherson expanded its lead. This time Damon Dechant drew the technical with Tabor down 54-39 with 12:12 left in the game.
The Bulldogs finished by outscoring Tabor 37-26.
McPherson had four players with double-figure scoring, paced by Casey Miller with 17. Marlon Dominique scored 14, Antowine Lamb 13 and Aaron Frazier 10.
Cody Arnold scored more than 20 points in the third of the past four ball games, finishing 23 on 9-for-18 shooting. Daniel Hann scored 12 points and had seven rebounds; Dechant scored 10 points and grabbed seven rebounds.
Other scorers for the Bluejays were Ryan Chippeaux (7), Michael Janzen (6), Lawson Kingsley (5) and Jason Hett (2).
Tabor falls to 4-8 in the KCAC and 7-14 overall.
Coming?Tabor plays two games at home this week, hosting Ottawa Thursday and Kansas Wesleyan Saturday.
The Bluejays beat Ottawa 78-67 Dec. 12 in Ottawa and Kansas Wesleyan 72-59 Jan. 7 in Salina.