Great Bend’s girls (6-6) will ride the momentum of a 65-55 victory over Olathe North into Tuesday’s non-league basketball game at Salina Central.
Great Bend’s Lauren Welsch scored 25 points in back-to-back games and Regan Unruh added 15 points for the Panthers, who converted 34 of 45 free throws against Olathe North. The Panther girls had 14 players see action Saturday.
Salina Central’s girls (9-3) are ranked sixth in Class 5A after finishing as state runner-up last year with a 64-53 loss to Leavenworth. The Mustangs beat the Panthers 76-58 in last year’s Class 5A state semifinal at Topeka.
The Panther girls are undersized and face a challenging task against taller teams on the boards. Casey Knoth leads the Mustangs with a 13-point average and Bailey Driver and Marysa Bradshaw average 8 ppg.
The Great Bend boys (2-10) battled state-ranked Class 6A Manhattan High tough in a 47-36 loss. Panthers Shade Wondra, Kody Corsby and Trey Ibarra have led the Panthers, who feature a strong perimeter offense.
The Panther boys also face a tall challenge against Salina Central (9-3), ranked fifth in Class 5A. Jordan McNally averages 17 ppg and Bryden Newschafer averages 12 ppg.
Other games match Otis-Bison at Central Plains, Hoisington at Smoky Valley, Kingman at Larned, Victoria at Ellinwood, Norwich at St. John, Skyline at Stafford, LaCrosse at Macksville and Pawnee Heights at Spearville.
The Central Plains girls are ranked first in Class 2A and Ellinwood is ranked second. The St. John boys are ranked first in Class 2A.
Larned’s boys (9-4) placed fifth at the St. John Mid-Winter Classic. The Indians feature a balanced offense behind Tyler Stelter averaging 10 ppg and Trevor Meyer, Evan Skelton, Derek Delgado and Isiah Perez all averaging 8 ppg.
The Hoisington boys (6-7, 1-3 CKL) have improved after a slow start behind standout Steffan Dolechek and Christopher Wright. Rylie Koester is averaging 17 ppg for the Hoisington girls.