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Indians dial long distance, beat Great Bend boys
spt deh gbhs bball v hays boys web
Great Bend High School Panther boys basketball player Kody Crosby (3) works his way to the basket against Hays High Indian defender Cole Murphy (2) Tuesday night at GBHS. - photo by DALE HOGG Great Bend Tribune

Great Bend’s zone defense dared Hays High to bomb 3-pointers and the Indians’ Cole Murphy and Claiborne Kyles were happy to accept the invitation.
Murphy and Claiborne dialed long distance eight times to spark Hays High past Great Bend 51-37 in Tuesday’s Western Athletic Conference basketball game. The Indians (6-1, 1-1 WAC) scored 24 points on 3-pointers, 16 on 2-pointers and 11 from the free-throw line.
“Give them credit because they knocked down some outside shots,” said Great Bend coach Tim Brooks. “When we play zone, we want to speed them up. Eventually, we got them out of their rhythm, but they have a quality basketball team that adjusted.”
The Panthers were down 45-25 when they made their vintage rally that sliced the lead to 48-37 when Jacob Murray ignited a fourth-quarter rally. But the Indians closed with the game’s final three free throws.
Murray led the Panthers with 12 points in his best scoring effort of the season. Kody Croby scored 11 points against heavy defensive pressure. Brayden Smith added nine points in a hustling effort until he was sidelined with a third-quarter ankle injury.
“It was good to see Jacob make a few shots,” Brooks said. “He was just a couple of field goals from gaining his confidence. He showed that tonight.”
Brooks said Smith’s ankle will be tested Wednesday.
“What’s tough is Brayden was playing really well and giving us an inside offensive presence,” Brooks said. “He’s really tough to defend in the paint. Brayden has playing one of his best games of the season.”
The Panthers (1-7, 0-3 WAC) have played two home games and won’t be home again until Feb. 3. Great Bend plays at Buhler Friday, weather permitting.
“The guys play with enthusiasm. We try our best at both ends of the floor and that’s all you can ask,” said Great Bend coach Tim Brooks. “We played with good effort. This is a tough basketball league with quality teams.”
Kyles scored 16 points and Murphy added 14 points as the Indians eventually adjusted to an inside game when the Panthers switched to man-to-man defense after halftime. Tyrese Hill benefited with 12 points, 10 in the second half off excellent passing by Kyles.
The Indians rang the long distance bell early and often. Murphy and Kyles each hit a pair of 3-pointers in the first period for a 14-10 lead. In the second quarter, Kyles hit a pair of 3-pointers and Murphy added his third 3-pointer for a 28-15 halftime lead. The Indians made 7 of 14 3-pointers and two of five 2-pointers.

HH 14 14 13 10 — 51
GB 10 5 10 12 — 37
HH—Murphy 4-7 2-2 14; McCrae 0-3 0-0 0; Hill 5-5 2-4 12; Kyles 4-5 4-7 16; Berens 2-5 1-2 5; Swayne 1-6 2-2 4; Kreutzer 0-2 0-0 0; Kieffer 0-2 0-0 0; Totals 16-33 11-17 51.
GB—Kody Crosby 4-12 3-5 11; Brayden Smith 4-5 1-4 9; Konner Ireland 1-5 1-4 3; Logan Perry 0-4 0-0 0; Koy Brack 0-1 0-0 0; Jacob Murray 5-11 0-4 12; Eric Woods 0-1 1-2 1; Totals 3.
3-point goals—HH 8-18 (Murphy 4-7, Kyles 4-5, Berens 0-1, Kieffer 0-1, Swayne 0-2, McCrae 0-2), GB 3-13 (Ireland 1-3, Murray 2-6, Crosby 0-3, Woods 0-1).