The Gardner-Edgerton boys basketball team made it five straight victories, but it wasn’t easy at home against Blue Valley.
By CHARLES REDFIELD
Special to The Star
The Trailblazers made all six of their free-throw attempts in the last 1 minute, 12 seconds on Friday and beat the Tigers 53-48 in an East Kansas League game.
The Trailblazers came in off winning the El Dorado Tournament last week and now are 7-5 overall and 3-4 in league play. Blue Valley fell to 5-6 and 2-3.
The Tigers cut the margin to 45-44 on a basket by senior Connor Hurst off a pass from senior Parker Little with 1:36 left in the game.
But sophomore Brett Wright was fouled on the next possession and he made both to make it a three-point game with 1:12 remaining. The Tigers turned the ball over against the Trailblazers full-court zone press and Wright was fouled again with a minute left. He made both to turn it into it a five-point game.
“He won the championship game of the El Dorado Tournament against (Wichita) Kapaun making 13 of 14 free throws in the fourth quarter,” Trailblazers coach Jeff Langrehr said. “We are playing well now. We have good energy and enthusiasm.
“The kids have recommitted and are having fun. We’re doing the things that good teams do.”
The last loss for the Trailblazers came against Blue Valley Northwest on Jan. 11.
“We saw a great team playing hard,” Langrehr said. “They are talented, but unselfish. They showed us what we needed to do.”
Blue Valley led 24-23 at halftime, but the Trailblazers outscored the Tigers by eight in the third quarter and took control of the game.
Senior Kyle Huppe had eight of his game-high 20 points in the third quarter and senior reserve Matt Plank hit a three-pointer in the quarter.
Blue Valley stayed in the game because of its size. The Tigers won the rebounding battle 30-17. Senior Parker Little had 10 rebounds (to go with his 10 points) and senior Charlie Marquardt added eight.
Marquardt had seven of his team-high 17 points in the fourth quarter as the Tigers battled to get back in the game.
Senior Dilon Dodson had 10 points and Plank had 10 points off the bench for the Trailblazers. They were 19 of 39 from the floor for 48 percent and 11-of-16 from the free-throw line.