Trojan boys end with league win

Trojan senior Jordan Faul got Hillsboro off to a good start with a pair of three-point baskets in the opening quarter. The first one opened all scoring, the second one put Hillsboro into the lead for good at 9-7.The Hillsboro boys broke down the Kingman Eagles with great ball movement on offense and great overall defense on the way to a 65-40 win over the Eagles last Tuesday in the regular-season finale.

The win elevated the Trojans to 17-3 for the season and a second-place finish in the Central Kansas League at 5-2 behind undefeated Hesston.

?I was really proud of the way the guys attacked offensively, and defensively we played tough on the boards and stopped their penetration for the most part,? coach Darrel Knoll said.

Jordan Faul got the game off with a bang when he drilled a three-pointer 48 seconds in. King?man led briefly thanks to some early free throws, but Hillsboro took the lead for good at 9-7 when Faul hit his second three of the quarter at the 5:32 mark. That basket ignited a 9-0 run that ended the first quarter with an 18-7 lead.

Kingman scored the first seven points of the second quarter, but when Christian Ratzlaff scored on a put-back at the 6:34 mark, the Trojans launched an 18-7 surge for a 36-21 lead at intermission.

Hillsboro?s scoring slowed as Kingman?s defense kicked it up a notch to start the third period, but the Trojans still outscored the visitors 9-7 for a 45-28 lead heading into the final quarter.

Brett Weinbrenner qualified the highlight reel for his tremendous passing skills. The senior guard dished out 10 assists for the game, including four in a row through the first three minutes of the fourth quarter. They resulted in a basket by Ratzlaff, two by Avery Franz and one by Evan Ollen?burger for an 8-0 burst that put Hillsboro in front 53-28.

?Everybody stepped up really well,? Knoll said. ?I was really proud of Avery. He was able to get to the open spots, the guys found him and he put the ball in the basket.?

A late shooting spree by Kingman?s Mitchell Packard prevented Hillsboro from reaching a running-clock lead. Pack?ard finished with 12 points in the quarter and a game-high 25 for the night.

?(Packard) was tough tonight,? Knoll said. ?He made some great plays and tough shots, but for the most part we defended really well.?

Ratzlaff led Hillsboro with 23 points and Franz finished with a career-high 10.

?It was obvious they were trying to take Christian and Brett out of the game,? Knoll said. ?We still found ways not only for those guys to score, but gave everybody else good scoring opportunities.?

Coming?Hillsboro was scheduled to begin sub-state play Tuesday as the tournament?s No. 2 seed against No. 7 Peabody-Burns (6-14).

The winner of that game will take on the winner of No. 3 Moundridge (16-4) and No. 6 (Canton-Galva) Friday at Berean Academy at a time to be determined. The Berean boys are the No. 1 seed at 17-2.

Results of Tuesday?s opener will be reported on hillsborofreepress.com and the Free Line (947-3336) that same evening.

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