WICHITA – After leading the majority of the game, untimely turnovers late in the game cost the Moundridge boys on the road Friday in Wichita giving Wichita Independent the opportunity to earn a late 53-47 win over the Wildcats in the Heart of America-Central Plains challenge.
With the loss, the number two ranked in Class 2A Wildcats drop to 4-2 overall heading into their Christmas break. Moundridge will return to the competitive hardwood on Tuesday, January 3 when they play host to Oxford. Wichita Independent was ranked number eight in Class 2A and remained unbeaten at 6-0.
“A lot to learn from tonight,” pointed out Wildcat head coach Vance Unrau. “Some defensive breakdowns that allowed easy scoring opportunities and some untimely turnovers created some real problems for ourselves.”
Moundridge held a slim one-point, 11-10 advantage at the end of the first quarter and pushed out to a seven-point, 31-24 lead when the two teams were heading into the halftime break.
The Panthers chipped five points off the Wildcat lead by the end of third quarter, pulling to within two at 42-40 before they powered past Moundridge with 13 points to the Wildcats five in the final quarter to hand Moundridge the final six-point loss.
Coach Unrau concluded his post-game reflections by adding, “We led by as many as 10 points and then they really amped up the physicality of the game and we didn’t respond well. Wichita Independent is a very athletic and quick team. We defended the three well and didn’t allow runouts for most of the game, but the fourth quarter was not kind to us as they got several easy scores and then we missed shots at our end. We can and will get better so that this team peaks at the right time.”
While the Wildcats shot a decent 42% from the field, the Panthers hit a hot 53%.
Individually, Landon Kaufman led the Wildcats while nearly getting a double-double as he scored 14 points thanks to four three-pointers while dishing out nine assists. Both Logan Churchill and Barrett Moddelmog came within a few stats of also having double-doubles as Churchill connected for 12 points and Moddelmog chipped in with 10 while both grabbed eight rebounds apiece. Henry Hecox nearly made it four Wildcats in double digits with nine points.
MOUNDRIDGE WILDCATS at Wichita Independent
SCORING: WILDCATS 11-20-11-5=47; Wichita Independent 10-14-16-13=53.
TEAM STATS: WILDCATS > FGs – 18/42, 3-PTs – 6/15, FTs – 5/8, AST – 17, REBs – 24, TO – 7, STLs – 2, BLKs – 3, FLs – 11; Wichita Independent > FGs – 23/43, 3-PTs – 2/14, FTs – 5/10, AST – 19, REBs – 18, TO – 3, STLs – 9, BLKs – 1, FLs – 12.
MOUNDRIDGE WILDCAT INDIVIDUAL STAT LEADERS:
Scoring: Landon Kaufman – 14; Logan Churchill – 12; Barrett Moddelmog – 10; Henry Hecox – 9; Layton Schmidt – 2.
3-Pointers Made: Kaufman – 4; Moddelmog – 2.
Assists: Kaufman – 9; Hecox – 4; Moddelmog – 3; Churchill – 1.
Rebounds: Churchill, Moddelmog – 8; Kaufman – 3; Hecox, Schmidt – 2; Zach Dixon – 1.
Steals: Kaufman – 2.
Blocked Shots: Churchill – 2; Hecox – 1.
(The Staff covering McPherson County Activities can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org)