Cowboys top Irish
Bouncing back from a tough loss Friday against Concordia, the Abilene Cowboys redeemed their confidence early in the home North Central Kansas League rival game against Chapman and used the early arrival of the confidence to carry them through the game to a win over the Irish, 65-27.
“Biggest thing is,” Abilene basketball Coach Terry Taylor said, “the kids gave a very good effort tonight.”
The Cowboys were very disappointed after the one point loss to the Panthers Friday and Taylor said they even seemed to carry the loss into practice Monday. But, he said he also feels that when the Cowboys came to the court, they did just what he said they would last week, “come back strong and be fine.”
The Cowboys came out and got a quick lead on the Irish and did not give the Irish any room to breathe. The Cowboys had a 33-9 lead at haft time over the Irish.
“When you hold someone to nine points the first half and be athletic enough against a team like Chapman,” Taylor said, “you are doing something right defensively, and we were solid the first half.”
After the break, Chapman basketball Coach Tony Ingram said that the Irish had a chance to breathe and broke down the defense enough to run through some plays. However, Ingram said that the Irish aren’t the kind of team that can offensively come down the court, make a few passes and be successful. He believed that the Cowboys came out and set a fast tempo for the game, and the Irish aren’t used to playing at that fast of a pace during their games.
The entire game, the Cowboys had a lead over the Irish. But not at any point, did the game get out-of-hand when it came to sportsmanship. Both the Abilene and Chapman coaches said they tell their boys how they represent the teams and themselves when they are on that court, and they felt the players were respectful and recognized the hard work on both sides.
“I think they competed hard,” Taylor said, “I believe their kids respected the fact that we played well and I know we respect and realized their hard work as well.”
“Credit to the Abilene team,” Ingram said. “They put a lot of pressure on us and played well. It was a hard fought game for us both. I think the kids respect each other out on the court, but there’s also a toughness there. We are two towns that are close together. There are going to be kids that know one another and there is going to be hard hits, but it’s part of the game, along with respect.”
Taylor said his boys will return to practice with another win they will carry with them and another game they will focus on for Friday.
As for the Irish, the will play again after their Holiday break and will take break working on the tempo of their game and on running through their offense and defense as they do every practice.
Chapman 5 4 14 4 — 27
Abilene 17 16 22 10 — 65
Chapman— Lehmkuhl 3, Harris 5, Heiman 8, Lexow 2, Canaday 4, Anderson 5
Abilene— Barlow 9, Wilson 15, Anderson 13, Hoekman 5, Kelly 9, Patrick 2, Gonzales 2, Harms 2, Witt 8
Cowgirls win 56-37
Unable to break the winning streak of the Cowgirls, the Chapman Lady Irish struggled to keep up with the North Central Kansas League Tuesday. The Cowgirls took advantage of their home court to win, 56-37.
The first half of the game the Lady Irish were neck and neck with the Cowgirl. But, after the intermission one team came out with a plan and the other team hung their head.
“We figured out after halftime,” Abilene girls basketball Coach Janelle Geist said, “that if we fed the fall to the post we would break the defense.”
After haft time the Cowgirls came out and scored eight points right off the net and stretched the eight point lead they had even further.
“The third quarter we let them score eight points,” Chapman girls basketball Coach Sara Cook said, “and then offensively we hung our heads, and we can’t do that with the teams we play.”
Once the Cowgirls stretched their lead, the Cowgirls made their move. Geist said, like she has in past games, the girls got things done. They set up their offense, broke down the defense and played their own kind of ball game on both ends of the court.
“We had really good defense,” Geist said. “We played very well and set things up the second half.”
However, even though the Lady Irish did not have the ability keep up with the Cowgirls, Cook said she felt like she saw progress in her girls this game.
“I felt the first half we did some good things offensively,” Cook said. “I felt like we ran though some things better against their man pressure and I see improvements and progress, we just got to keep playing defense, and keep fighting and clawing our way up.”
Geist said the Cowgirls will focus mainly on offensive plays against difference defenses. The Cowgirls will see two completely different defenses than they have all season when they play Buhler on Friday. But, Geist said other than making a game plan for the new defense, the practice drills will not change from the normal focuses. She believes her team is strong right now and that a lot of their success comes from their chemistry on and off the court and practice is just a piece of their success.
As for the Lady Irish, Cook said that over break she will have her girls focus on their defense intensity because a lot of the teams they see are shooters and they need to be prepared. She also said she thinks her girls are struggling against man-to-man defense in many aspects when it comes to their offense, so she plans on trying to make her team more comfortable with the offense they run and to focus on the systems.
Chapman 9 13 11 4 — 37
Abilene 12 14 18 12 — 56
Chapman—Lovett 3, Sutter 2, Anderson 9, Woods 5, Langvardt 1, Hurford 8, Heiman 9
Abilene— Geist 9, Sexton 4, Crider 14, Barbieri 16, Taylor 13