SALINA, Kan. — Semi Ojeleye became the all-time leading scorer in Kansas High School history in Ottawa’s first round win in the Class 4A State Tournament earlier this week.
By PAUL MOGENSEN
Special to The Star
Friday night Ojeleye, a Duke signee, put his name in the record books again by scoring 45 points in a 73-49 semifinals victory over Andale and passing Micah Swank’s record for most points in a 4A boys game at state. Swank scored 39 in a game for Pratt last year.
The Cyclones, 24-0, moved into the championship game for the fourth consecutive season, but will be seeking their first crown during that span.
For two seasons, Sumner Academy stood in their path, and last year it was Basehor-Linwood that knocked the Cyclones off.
“We get to play one more game with these nine seniors,” said Jon McKowen, Ottawa’s head coach. “Preparation will start in a little bit. It’s a quick turnaround and you hope it comes through.”
From the opening tip, it was Ojeleye’s night, The smooth and powerful 6-8 senior, scored Ottawa’s first 16 points on three three-pointers, a rebound dunk and five free throws.
When he had finished his explosion in the first quarter, he had scored 21 of Ottawa’s 23 points as the Cyclones had opened up a 23-13 lead.
“We see that every day in practice,” McKowen said.
The rest of the Cyclones got into the act in the second quarter as they pulled out to a 39-21 advantage just before the break.
Ottawa pretty much kept it in cruise control for the second half as the Indians began to have some success from downtown.
Alex Hasty, who scored 22 in the tournament opener, followed Ojeleye with 8. Bo Knoblauch, a 5-11 freshman, led Andale, 21-3, with 13. Ben Seiler scored 10 for Andale.
The 45 put up by Ojeleye improves his state single season record to 925 in 24 games, an average of 38.5 points per outing.
His line on the night was 14 of 29 from the floor (six of 12 on threes) and 11 of 15 at the free-throw line.
McPherson girls 53, Paola 38
Defending 4A champion McPherson moved on to the championship game against Wamego as Katelyn Loecker was way too much for the Panthers to contain on Friday.
Loecker, last year’s Gatorade Female Player of the Year for Kansas, scored 27 points and had nine blocked shots as the Bullpups, 22-3, pulled away in the second quarter and kept the Panthers at arms length the rest of the way.
Paola, 19-5, held an early lead, but McPherson bridged the first and second quarters with an 11-0 run to open a 23-8 lead with 6:30 to go in the half.
Lyndsee Johnson and Tiana Moala each had 13 for Paola.