By Staff

            MANHATTAN – The charge is still moving as the Moundridge boys continued their march to one more state championship for the coach on Friday with a heart stopping, final basket, one-point, 56-55 win over Hays-Thomas More Prep in the Class 2A State semi-finals.

            Now sitting at 22-3, the Wildcats move on to play Saturday at 4:00 p.m. against Wichita Independent (23-2) for the Class 2A State championship.  Moundridge lost to Wichita Independent, 47-53, back on December 16.

            Wildcat head coach Vance Unrau is retiring at the end of the school year, and this is an opportunity for the Wildcats to win him a sixth state championship in 10 trips to the championship game within his illustrious 36-year coaching career.

            On Friday, Moundridge jumped out to a three-point, 20-17 lead at the end of the first quarter before staying ahead by two at 31-29 heading into the halftime break despite playing the majority of the first half with leading scorer Logan Churchill who had to ride the bench due to foul troubles.

            The Wildcats pushed back out to a four-point, 45-41 lead at the end of the third quarter before Thomas More Prep rallied back and took a short one-point lead with just seconds to go as Henry Hecox hit a floater as time was running out to give the Wildcats the final one-point heart stopping victory.

            When looking at the team stats, much of them are almost as dead even as the game was itself, though TMP shot 11 more free throws as the Wildcats were whistled for fouls 15 times to TMP’s seven.

            TMP was a two man game as Luke Rome scored 26 points and had 10 rebounds and Dylan Werth had 18 points.

            For Moundridge, with Churchill hampered by foul issues, Barrett Moddelmog took the offensive torch and connected on five three-pointers in leading the team in scoring with 17 while Landon Kaufman recorded a double-double with 13 points and 10 assists. Besides hitting the game winner, Henry Hecox chipped in with 12 while Churchill ended up with eight.

MOUNDRIDGE WILDCATS vs. Thomas More Prep at Class 2A State Tournament

SCORING: WILDCATS > 20-11-14-11 = 56;  TMP > 17-12-12-14 = 55.

TEAM STATS: WILDCATS > FGs – 22/42; 3-PTs- 9/19; FTs – 3/7; AST – 17; REBs – 16; TO – 9; STLs – 7; BLKs – 4; FLs – 15.  TMP > FGs – 23/42; 3-PTs – 2/8; FTs – 7/16; AST – 14; REBs – 27; TO – 8; STLs – 5; BLKs – 4; FLs – 7.

MOUNDRIDGE WILDCATS INDIVIDUAL STATS: Scoring > Barrett Moddelmog – 17; Landon Kaufman – 13; Henry Hecox – 12; Logan Churchill – 8; Alex Huddle – 6.  3-Pointers Made > Moddelmog – 5; Hecox, Churchill – 2.  Assists > Kaufman – 10; Hecox – 4; Moddelmog, Churchill, Huddle – 1.  Rebounds > Hecox – 5; Kaufman – 4; Moddelmog, Churchill, Huddle – 2; Zach Dixon – 1.  Steals > Kaufman, Hecox – 3; Layton Schmidt – 1.  Blocked Shots > Kaufman, Hecox, Churchill, Schmidt – 1.

 (The Staff covering events for the MAC AREA SPORTS NEW can be reached by email at crossdovewriter@gmail.com)