By William

MCPHERSON – The McPherson Middle School eighth-grade boys basketball teams closed out their 2019-20 with two home court victories on Monday against Fort Riley.


The eighth-grade Junior Pup ‘A’ team bounced back from their first loss of the season by basically dismantling Fort Riley to the tune of a 64-point, 75-11, victory. With the win the ‘A’ team closed the season with a record of 10-1.

“From the tip we were quickly able to get it going,” explained eighth-grade Junior Pup Head Coach Jay Crawford. “One thing I was worried about was us getting out early and coasting the rest of the way. I needed to challenge them in a different way besides what the scoreboard said, holding them below 20 was just on of those goals. They made sure nothing Fort Riley ran was easy the entire game. We were able to get in passing lanes which led to easy layups.”

Javyn Alexander and Alex Robertson had huge days offensively for the Junior Pups as they led the team with 21 and 17 points respectively while Gavin Wedel also joined them in double digits with 13.

Coach Crawford continued his post-game reflections of the ‘A’ game by adding, “This is a very talented team that played hard and competes really well. They really enjoy playing defense and getting out into the open court. It is a team that likes to play together and has many different guys that can score which made it difficult for teams to match up with. I told these guys last Thursday after the loss that I felt bad for the team that plays us next. These guys responded to the loss with a great practice on Friday and the score is just a result of the way we practice and I’m very proud of the guys.”


Nine Junior Pups put points in the scorebook in the eighth grade ‘B’ game as they closed out their season at 6-4 with a 13-point, 40-27 victory over Fort Riley.

While nine players scored, only Kyden Thompson reached double digits as he scored 11 while Owen Fetsch came close with eight.

“The guys have done a great job all season of knowing what it takes to come out and win,” pointed out ‘B’ team Coach Grant Barrett in his post-game reflections. “They just needed to prove it one last time. Scoring wasn’t the problem for us in this game, we had our usual contributors, but it’s good to see some new guys on the scoring sheet. They have worked hard all season, and it’s good to see it pay off in the end. Seeing these guys struggle making layups at the beginning of the season to seeing them willfully shoot a left-handed layup in games makes me proud.”


Head Coach Crawford took time during his post-game reflections to add a few comments about the ‘B’ team, saying, “I am proud of how our ‘B’ team got better at doing different things and the improvement they made over the season. This group had a lot of guys sharing minutes, so each player really gave great effort when it was their time to go in.”

Concluding his reflections, Coach Crawford gave an overall look at the season for the eighth-grade Junior Pups, adding, “Both teams had winning records and that is a great accomplishment and something to be proud of. Also, Coach Barrett did a very good job and I enjoyed coaching with him and look forward to working a long side him against next season. We wish this group of players the very best as they move on to the high school next season.”

8TH GRADE ‘A’ TEAM JUNIOR PUPS SCORING (75 total points): Javyn Alexander – 21; Alex Robertson – 17; Gavin Wedel – 13; Cory Muehler – 6; Kyden Thompson – 6; Henry Boese – 4; Owen Pyle – 4; Alex Wheat – 4.

8th GRADE ‘B’ TEAM JUNIOR PUPS SCORING (40 total points): Kyden Thompson – 11; Owen Fetsch – 8; Riley Newboles – 5; Noah Wilgers – 5; Jace Grosse – 3; Madden Lutting – 3; Connor Eickbush – 2; Alex Wheat – 2; Jaiden Strickland – 1.

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(Post is SPONSORED by CrossDove Writers)