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Garden City holds on after Great Bend storms back

POSTED January 7, 2012 11:24 p.m.
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The first victory of the season for the Great Bend High School girls’ basketball team still hasn’t arrived.
The Lady Panthers came tantalizingly close against Garden City in their Western Athletic Conference opener on Friday night at Panther Fieldhouse. But the first taste of victory will have to wait, at least a couple more days.
Garden City withstood a late rush by the Lady Panthers and held on for a 45-41 victory. The Lady Buffs, 5-2 overall and 2-0 for the early lead in the WAC standings, were coming off a last-second victory over two-time defending conference champion Dodge City in the Lady Buffs’ WAC opener on Tuesday.
Great Bend is now 0-7, 0-1.
“We’re going to keep harping at the girls that we’re in this thing to win games,” Great Bend head coach Jason Tatkenhorst said. “If we didn’t win this game, we were going to be upset.
“We came close, and we’re going to keep being positive with the girls. They know what they’ve got to do, and they’ve hung together.”
The Lady Panthers trailed 40-33 with 2:06 left in the fourth quarter before making a serious run at Garden. Brandi Schneider made the second of two free throws for Great Bend before senior teammate Olivia Basye shot in a 3-pointer with 1:14 to go to trim the margin to 42-37.
And, Great Bend closed to within 42-41 after senior Liz Kutina converted two free throws and sophomore McKenna Mauler made a steal and layup.
Forced to foul, the Lady Panthers put Garden freshman Jayme Bernbeck at the line with 25 seconds left. She made the first but missed the second, with the possession arrow pointed Garden’s way after a jump ball ensued.
Casey Curran then iced the game with 9.1 seconds left after converting a pair of free throws.
Kutina led GBHS with 10 points, Mauler had a season-high nine points and Basye scored seven.
Trailing 8-5 after the opening quarter, the Lady Panthers ratcheted up their game in the second period and put together perhaps their best eight-minute stretch of the season to lead 17-14 at intermission.
“We played good basketball in the second quarter,” Tatkenhorst said. “I thought we executed more on offense very well and we still got frustrated with a couple turnovers.
“When it’s difficult for us to score, we’ve got to be great on defense, we’ve got to take care of the ball and we’ve got to rebound. Again, it was not quite good enough.”
Mauler hit a basket from near the free-throw line and then drained a 3 to give Great Bend a 10-8 lead, the start of an 8-0 run to give the host team a 13-8 advantage. Kutina added a bucket in the lane, and Tarynn Stueder sank a free throw for the five-point edge with 2:26 remaining before halftime.
Kutina later scored in the low post at the 1:29 mark for a 15-10 lead before she made a slick feed to Morgan Harwood for a driving layup off a fast break for a 17-12 lead. Garden then scored the final points of the quarter to make it a three-point game at halftime.
The Lady Buffs took back some of the momentum, outscoring GBHS 16-6 in the third quarter to assume a 30-23 edge entering into the final period.
GBHS gets back in action on Tuesday, traveling to Hays for another WAC game. The girls game starts at around 6 p.m., followed by the boys.

Western Athletic Conference
At Great Bend
Panther Fieldhouse



Garden City 45, Great Bend 41
GREAT BEND (0-7, 0-1)

     Brandi Schneider 0 2-4 2, Emily Cruse 0 0-1 0, Olivia Basye 2 1-2 7, Katelyn Henning 0 0-0 0, Hannah Hildebrand 1 2-3 4, Liz Kutina 3 4-6 10, Regan Unruh 1 0-0 2, McKenna Mauler 4 0-0 9, Tarynn Stueder 0 1-2 1, Morgan Harwood 3 0-2 6, Kelsey Crosby 0 0-0 0. Totals 14 10-20 41.
GARDEN CITY (5-2, 2-0)

     Johna McClelland 2 1-2 5, Casey Curran 0 5-6 5, Kristen Heiman 2 4-6 8, Abbey Campbell 0 0-0 0, Kennedy Brunson 0 2-2 2, Taryn Tempel 5 6-9 16, Alex Miller 0 2-2 2, Shelby Heatwole 0 0-0 0, Jayme Bernbeck 1 3-6 5, Jessica Hinde 1 0-2 2. Totals 11 23-35 45.
Garden City         8    6   16   15  —  45
Great Bend         5   12    6   18  —  41

    Three-point goals — Great Bend 3 (Basye 2, Mauler); Garden City (None). Fouled out — None.


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