Strong finish nets Trojans? comeback


Isaac Hett shoots over Clay Shewey, and scores two points. Hillsboro had to erase a 12-point Marion lead to win Friday.

The Hillsboro High boys drained 10 straight free-throws in the final 1:47 to propel themselves to a 59-49 home-court comeback victory over Marion Friday night.

Marion, with only five wins for the season, gave the Trojans (12-6) all they could handle until the final minute of the contest.

?They really came to play tonight?I knew they would,? Hillsboro coach Darrel Knoll said of Marion. ?I was really pleased with our team?s composure to keep playing because (Marion) really had momentum there for a while in the first half, and we were missing shots that we usually make.?

The Warriors took a 16-10 lead in the opening quarter when Wil Case hit a 3-pointer at the 1:39 mark, and the score held until the buzzer.

When Luke Gordon hit a 3-pointer with 2:55 left in the half, the Warriors enjoyed their biggest lead of the night at 27-15.

But Clay Shewey started and ended a 10-2 run with 3-point baskets to close the margin to 29-25 at intermission.

?Being able to cut it down to four by halftime was really instrumental,? Knoll said. ?I thought we played a solid second half all the way around.?

Marion hung on to a slim lead through most of the third quarter until Ben Bebermeyer scored in the paint and completed the traditional three-point play with a free throw to tie the game at 39 with 2:46 left in the quarter.

Marion took one last lead when Eric Vogel scored on Marion?s next possession. But two free throws by Daniel Jost and a 3-pointer by Shewey gave the Trojans a 44-41 advantage as the quarter ended.

When Marion?s Vogel scored on a put-back with 3:34 to go to cut Hills?boro?s lead to a 49-47 margin, the Trojans started their free-throw streak down the home stretch?while holding Marion to a single basket.

Marion actually outshot Hillsboro from the floor, 45 percent (21-47) to 38 percent (18-48) and held a 33-27 advantage on the boards.

Hillsboro?s huge advantage at the line (17-for-22 to 5-for-7) and in ball-handling (nine turnovers to Marion?s 17) proved to be the difference.

Shewey led a three-pronged Trojan attack with 16 points while Jost and Loewen each tossed in 15.

Gordon finished with 13, Vogel 12 and Elliot Hett 10 for Marion.

Ellinwood?The Trojans overcame the home team?s hot start in an old gym and ended up beating the Eagles by a comfortable 61-42 margin last Tuesday.

Playing in Ellinwood?s secondary gym on ?Retro Night,? Hillsboro trailed 18-13 at the first break. The Eagles, 11-6 coming in, made eight of 14 shots, including two 3-pointers, while Hills?boro struggled for six baskets in 15 attempts.

The story line changed quickly in the second quarter. Clay Shewey and Daniel Jost hit back-to-back 3-pointers within the first minute and David Loewen added a put-back for an 8-0 run over the first 1:30 and a 21-18 lead.

Shewey added two more 3-pointers and a 2-point basket for 18 first-half points to help HHS to a 34-23 lead at intermission.

?They shot the ball well early and I thought we came out a little flat-footed on defense,? coach Darrel Knoll said. ?But give us credit, we kept playing and didn?t panic. All of a sudden we found ourselves ahead a little bit and we were able to get away from them.?

Hillsboro held Ellinwood to one basket?a 3-pointer?and four free throws in the third period as the lead grew to 43-30.

Loewen scored two quick baskets to start the fourth quarter and Hillsboro never looked back as the lead grew to as much as 22 points (56-34) midway through the period.

The Trojans outshot the Eagles from the floor, 48 percent (22-46) to 34 percent (15-44). Shewey finished with 26 points as Hillsboro improved to 11-6 overall and 7-2 in the league.

Knoll said he was pleased with his team?s effort, with key contributions from several players, especially Shewey.

?Clay was really good tonight?on both ends of the courts,? he said.

Coming?An early report of Hillsboro?s Tuesday game against No. 1 ranked Wichita Collegiate is posted on the Free Press Web site.

On Thursday, Hillsboro finishes the regular season with a rematch at home against Nick?erson in a game rescheduled from Dec. 16. The Trojans won their Feb. 13 matchup at Nicker?son, 54-44.

Next week, sub-state begins with Marion as the host school. The first game will be played on the home court of the higher-seeded team.

In addition to the Trojans and Warriors, the field includes Southeast of Saline, Halstead, undefeated Hutchinson Trinity, St. John?s Military, Sedgwick and Reming?ton.

Seeding and schedules will be determined today (Feb. 25), and will be posted at as soon as the information becomes available.

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