A nine-point swing in the third quarter proved to be pivotal as Hillsboro dropped a 46-41 decision to King?man Friday at Brown Gym?na?sium.
The Trojans seemed to be in control of their destiny in the first half, establishing a 12-10 lead after one quarter and a 24-21 advantage by halftime.
?I thought we played really well in the first half,? coach Darrel Knoll said. ?They got a couple of open looks on us, but we played well.?
But the Trojan team that started the third quarter didn?t look like the team that had battled hard in the first half. The Eagles scored the first eight points of the period, and by the end of it, Hillsboro was trailing, 38-32.
?We came out in the third quarter and had a couple of good looks we didn?t make, then we gave up too many second rebounds in a row,? Knoll said. ?It should have been a one-and-done for them.
?Then we had a couple of turnovers, and I couldn?t get a timeout fast enough,? he added. ?I was trying to get it, but I wasn?t awarded the timeout.?
The Eagles expanded the lead to 42-34 with 3:53 left in the game. The Trojans tried to swing momentum their way, but turn?overs, missed shots and lack of rebounding undermined their effort to achieve a comeback victory.
?At least we battled down the stretch,? Knoll said. ?We had chances. Even at the end, we kept it at a couple-of-possessions game. We just couldn?t make the baskets down the stretch.?
Allen scored 10 points, all in the first half, to lead his team. Austin Cross added nine in the paint and Elias Werth scored nine from long distance.
Hillsboro slipped to 9-8 on the year and 3-5 in the CKL. Kingman improved to 8-9 and 5-3.
Hoisington?Hillsboro?s fourth-quarter rally ran out of gas about 21?2 minutes too at soon as the Cardinals held off the Trojans, 51-43, Feb. 10 at Hoisington.
After Austin Cross scored the game?s first basket on a nice inside feed by Josh Funk, Hillsboro soon fell behind. The Cardinals went on a 13-2 run to lead by nine with 1:39 left in the period. Hoisington pushed the lead to 15-5 soon after.
But Micah Allen hit back-to-back threes?the first with 37.2 seconds left and the second one at the buzzer?to cut the lead to 16-11 at the first break.
Hillsboro pulled to within 16-15 early in the second quarter, but back-to-back three-pointers helped fuel the Cardinals to a 26-22 lead at intermission.
Cross and Allen scored early in the third quarter to tie the game at 26. A minute later, Grant Knoll tied the game at 28 with 5:39 left in the third quarter. But four consecutive turnovers by the Trojans enabled the Cardi?nals to push the lead to 35-28.
The margin grew to nine points before Knoll scored on a drive to the basket with five seconds left, then added a bonus free throw that cut the lead to 40-34 at the break.
Two quick baskets by Seth Owen, Hoisington?s bulky 6-foot-2 post player, pushed the lead to 10 points again. Over an ugly three-minute stretch that followed, Hillsboro outscored the home team 4-0?all on free-throws. Braden Vogt then hit a three and Allen added two more free throws to cut the margin to 43-41 with 2:38 to play.
Unfortunately, Hillsboro would be shut out the rest of the way. A string of three turnovers mixed with three missed shots short-circuited a happy ending for the Tro?jans, who made only one of 12 shots during the quarter.
?I thought we competed hard down the stretch, but some things didn?t go quite our way with those turn?overs at the end,? coach Darrel Knoll said. ?It wasn?t like we weren?t trying to make a play, we just didn?t get it made.?
Allen led all scorers with 20 points and Cross added nine. Steffan Dolecheck led Hoisington with 13.
The loss dropped Hills?boro to 9-7 and 3-4 in the CKL, while Hoisington improved to 7-9 and 2-5.
Coming?Hills?boro was scheduled to play at Haven 10-6, 4-3) Tuesday, then will host Hesston (14-2, 7-0) Friday at 7:30 p.m. The regular season ends the following Tuesday with games at home against Sterling (10-6, 4-3).