|Perkins County Plainsmen 1-1 after weekend on home court|
By Pastor Vince Carrig
Sophomore guard Jake Sexson showed off his smooth shooting stroke immediately in his first varsity start, spinning in three three-pointers in the first quarter to lead all scorers with 13 points and the Plainsmen to a 48-30 victory over the Maxwell Wildcats on Friday night in Grant.
Sexson’s first shot died on the back iron and took the friendly roll down, but his second effortless attempt whipped right through and shot Perkins County to a 6-1 lead.
Fellow starting sophomore guard Quinton Hite popped an off-balance, first quarter “three” as well, and also deposited his own steal to shoot the Plainsmen out to a 20-6 first quarter lead.
Sophomore guard Alex Johnston rung up a second quarter three-pointer, and his Perkins County squad cruised to a 27-17 halftime lead.
Johnston’s score beat back a Wildcats comeback attempt; a Drew Solie three-pointer and Brian Smith breakaway layup had Maxwell within five at 23-17.
Whether it looked like senior center Tyler Brott’s swat block of Ben Keller’s shot, Austin Gaston scrambling Keller’s dribbling radar into a turnover, or Hite refusing a Smith breakaway layup, the Plainsmen played good defense in holding a potent team to just 30 points.
“We played hard defensively; I think that’s probably what got us the win,” Plainsmen Head Coach Shawn Cole said after the game. “To hold a team that athletic to just 30 points is a big accomplishment. Our posts played good defense along with our wings–not a lot of drives to the basket.”
Certainly Brott’s interior presence, Gaston’s good work to seal off the post, and the pursuit of guards Jeremy Hagan and Hite altered Maxwell’s shots and influenced Wildcat misses in Perkins County holding Maxwell to just six points in the third quarter.
Hagan and Sexson registered three pointers and ran the Plainsmen in the opposite direction of Maxwell in the third quarter.
Brott swished a line drive from 12 feet away to swell the Plainsmen lead to 42-22 in the fourth quarter and assure the home team of an opening-game victory.
Sophomores Colton White and Blake Poppe both hit free throws for their first varsity points.
Hite’s 10 points, Hagan’s eight, seven apiece from Johnston and Brott balanced scoring among the Plainsmen starters.
Guard Cody Steinke and forward Ben Sukraw earned foul line trips and scored six of their combined 12 points on free throws; no Wildcats player scored more than six points.
PC 48, Maxwell 30
Wildcats 6 11 5 8—30
Plainsmen 20 7 11 10—48
PC vs. Hershey
Hershey forward Jordan Hiatt peppered the backboard with eight quick points and then teamed with forward Jordan Blomstedt for a monster second quarter as the Panthers planted the Plainsmen, 66-32 Saturday night in Grant.
Hiatt got a “three” to go in the second quarter, as did guard Jimmy Moore. Blomstedt’s height helped him to have his way with an offensive rebound and a couple of shots from just two feet away as Hershey erupted for a 23-5 second quarter.
With a 36-14 halftime lead and gaining offensive penetration, Hershey took advantage of the ability to kick the ball back out to the three-point line and let ‘em launch. Reserve guards Tucker White and Matt Pishna asserted themselves from beyond the arc in the third; joined by Jimmy Moore, the Panthers extended their lead with a 20-9 third quarter.
Statistics do tell the story for the Plainsmen in this contest: nearly equal or better in some statistical categories to Hershey, a dismal and abysmal 23.5 shooting percentage skewed this effort like haywire in a hurry.
“You saw a young inexperienced group of boys playing what I would consider a very good basketball team [on Saturday night],” Plainsmen Head Coach Shawn Cole said after the game. “I feel if we would have shot the ball better we could have played with them. We will get better and I am going to say that the next time we play them it won’t be a 30-point game.”
Shooting with the hot hand the night before against Maxwell, Perkins County watched handfuls of shots bound off the rim, backboard or both–39 for the game.
This kept any Plainsmen from breaking double-digits in the points column, with guard Quinton Hite leading the young team with seven points.
Both teams hit five three-pointers, with number of attempts the only difference: Hershey needed 11 tries to get those 15 points, but it took Perkins County shooters 21. Reserve forward Alek Pelster nailed two of those three pointers for the Plainsmen.
PC 32, Hershey 66
Hershey 13 23 20 10—66
Perkins Co. 9 5 9 9—32
The 1-1 Plainsmen travel to Kimball to play the 1-2 Longhorns on Friday and return home to face another C1 opponent, the 0-2 Gothenburg Swedes on Saturday in Grant.