LARNED — With time draining off the clock, Great Bend High School’s boys’ basketball team managed a come-from-behind victory over Larned on Tuesday night.
Thanks largely to a monster night from freshman Kody Crosby, the Panthers edged Larned 54-51.
Great Bend improves to 3-9 this season, getting its second consecutive win after defeating Wichita Campus on Saturday.
“Anytime you get a win, it’s great,” GBHS head coach Christ Battin said. “I think the way we had to win this one was even more important. Being behind by that much early, the boys had to dig down deep and keep fighting. I think it shows what courage they have to keep fighting and keep working.”
Crosby turned in career-high scoring performance, topping his total from the Campus game. The freshman scored 32 points, going 10-for-10 from the free-throw line.
“He stepped up and knocked down a lot of big shots for us,” Battin said. “He went 10-for-10 from the line, making his free throws down the stretch.
“More than that, the guys did a great job getting him the ball. He’s a big part of what we do, but the rest of the team helped him out moving the ball and screening for him.”
The Panthers trailed 33-22 at halftime, but they got a boost in the third quarter.
Great Bend out scored Larned 16-4, leaving the Panthers ahead 38-37 heading into the final eight minutes.
“We came out with some real energy and fire in the third quarter,” Battin said. “We were able to cut the lead up to two early on, and then they pulled away a little bit and we fought back.”
The game went back-and-forth in the fourth quarter with the Panthers tying things up in the final seconds.
“We tied it up at 22 seconds left when Nick (Warren) hit his free-throw,” Battin said. “Kody hit a pair of free throws with about five seconds left to put us ahead.”
Larned was led by Brayden Smith, who scored 15 points. Tyler Stelter added 12 points.
Great Bend is back in action on Tuesday, Feb. 4, when it hosts Hoisington.
HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL
Great Bend 54, Larned 51
GREAT BEND (3-9)
Trey Ibarra 1 2-2 4, Kody Crosby 9 10-10 32, Bryce Beck 2 2-6 7, Blake Sullivan 1 0-0 3, Nick Warren 3 2-2 8. Totals 16 16-20 54.
Easton Palmer 2 0-0 5, Brayden Smith 4 5-5 15, Grant Unruh 3 0-0 7, Tyler Stelter 5 1-4 12, Camryn Bryant 1 3-4 5, Michael Reece 2 3-7 7. Totals 17 12-20 51.
Great Bend 7 15 16 16 — 54
Larned 13 20 4 14 — 51
Three-point goals — Great Bend 6 (Crosby 4, Beck, Sullivan); Larned 5 (Smith 2, Palmer, Unruh, Stelter).