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Ball-handling woes continue

Western Athletic Conference

POSTED February 19, 2012 12:19 a.m.

DODGE CITY — Smothering on-ball defensive pressure provided the needed gusto for the Dodge City High School Red Demons to stick a fork in Great Bend’s early lead.
Like gunslingers on Main Street in this historic Old West town, Great Bend came out firing on Friday night, building a 16-7 lead after one quarter.
From there, Trey Hallman and his Demons teammates returned heavy fire — most notably in the second half — and the Panthers were toast in a 45-33 Western Athletic Conference loss at the DCHS Fieldhouse.
Hallman, a senior guard, bidding for WAC Player of the Year honors as the Demons (9-9, 5-1) bid for the conference crown, led the way in helping force the Panthers into a game-changing 21 turnovers.
“It’s been our Achilles’ heel all season long,” GBHS head coach Chris Battin said of his team (5-13, 1-5). “We just turn it over too many times and we don’t take care of the basketball.”
Great Bend owned an 18-9 lead with 5:12 left in the second quarter, but it quickly dissolved as Dodge City went on a half-ending 8-0 run to close to 18-17 at halftime.
At that point, it seemed to be the beginning of the end for the Panthers. Hallman, a Butler Community College football signee, finished with 15 points, five steals and three assists in spearheading a 28-15 second-half rush by Dodge as it shot down the Panthers.
“We closed out the half really well, but dug ourselves a hole early on,” DCHS head coach Dennis Hamilton said. “Great Bend came out and hit us in the mouth to start with.
“But in the second quarter, especially at the end, when we got into a little bit of a pressing game, it helped get us going. We can guard on-ball pretty well, we really can.”
By the time the defensive pressure put Great Bend’s offensive sets in flux, Battin had benched Bowman and Henderson, two of his top players, his top scorers, from midway through the fourth quarter until game’s end.
“We weren’t playing hard,” Battin said. “We quit playing hard in the fourth quarter and it was time to try other people.
“We didn’t execute anything in the fourth quarter, and a lot of that was because of Dodge City. They took us out of everything we wanted to be in and we didn’t execute when it mattered. That’s the bottom line tonight.”
Bowman finished with nine points — all of which came in the first quarter during a 9-5 run that helped GBHS build a 16-7 lead.
But Bowman, who missed all four of his shots to finish 4 for 9 on the night, also committed four turnovers. GBHS guard Matt Marshall, who scored a team-high 10 points, had six turnovers.
Henderson, who has come on strong as of late, managed only four points but had a team-high eight rebounds despite not playing down the stretch. It was Henderson who scored the game-tying basket just before the buzzer, sending Great Bend’s game with Garden City in overtime a week ago last Friday, ultimately an overtime loss.
At Dodge City, Bowman and Henderson sat and watched at the end while their Panthers teammates struggled running their offense in the late going as they continually turned the ball over.
Outside of Marshall, who shot in a pair of late 3s, the second with 2:36 left in the game, pulling the Panthers within 41-31, he had very little help down the stretch.
“We were executing,” Battin said of the Panthers’ first-half play. “We were cutting hard and setting screens.
“We were taking care of the basketball and we were battling on the glass and doing the things that it takes to win. We just quit doing that.”


Western Athletic Conference

At DCHS Fieldhouse
Dodge City



Dodge City 45, Great Bend 33
GREAT BEND (5-13, 1-5)

     Connor Sell 0-1 1-2 1, Matt Marshall 4-7 0-0 10, Chad Touslee 3-3 0-2 6, Dillon Reiser 1-1 0-0 2, Mitch Johnson 0-0 0-0 0, Bryce Beck 0-2 1-2 1, Jonathan Allende 0-0 0-0 0, Gabe Joiner 0-0 0-0 0, Jace Bowman 4-9 0-0 9, Ethan Henderson 2-5 0-0 4, Blaise Cain 0-2 0-0 0, Wyatt Bayless 0-0 0-0 0, Nick Warren 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 14-30 2-6 33.
DODGE CITY (9-9, 5-1)

Isaiah Bradshaw 2-7 0-0 5, Jonathan Taylor 0-0 0-0 0, Trey Hallman 7-13 1-3 15, Austin Weiser 0-6 1-2 1, Adley Davis 2-3 0-0 4, Jordan Doan 1-4 2-2 4, Todd Middleton 0-0 0-0 0, Kelan Newton 1-2 0-0 2, Jace Larson 4-6 0-0 8, Matt Goedeken 3-4 0-0 6. Totals 20-45 4-7 45.
Great Bend                    16    2    6    9  — 33
Dodge City                       7   10  13  15 — 45

     Three-point goals —Dodge 1 (Bradshaw); Great Bend 1 (Bowman 1).


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