By Kevin Price
MACKSVILLE — The Macksville High School boys’ basketball team were able to shut down Quivira Heights offensively, finishing with an 81-46 win on Friday night at The Stable.
Right from the start, the Mustangs jumped on Quivira Heights, starting on a 13-2 run that lasted the first four minutes of the game.
“We played very well,” Macksville head coach Jeff Kuckelman said. “We shared the ball well. We shot the ball well. We rebounded well. I mean, we did a lot of things very well. That added up to a nice victory for us.”
Taylor Tranbarger got Macksville, which is ranked No. 3 in Class 1A Division-I in the latest Kansas Basketball Coaches Association poll, started scoring the first four points, two from the free-throw line and two from the field. Tranbarger finished the game with 14 points.
Adam Oak scored two points on a layup after Seth Filbert got the first of two steals in the game.
Oak, who finished the game with 19 points and a team-leading five steals and seven assists, capped off the run with a 3-pointer.
“Macksville played really well,” Quivira Heights head coach Clay Mettlen said. “That was the biggest part of the game. We could play better defense, but if they are going to make 3s at the percentage that they did. If they’re just going to play that well, it’s going to be difficult for us to keep up especially when we are not shooting the ball well at all.
Taylor Siemsen, who was held to only eight points, hit a jumper for Quivira Heights to put the Thunderbirds on the scoreboard at the 4:44 mark.
“They were a focus for us,” Kuckelman said of Gunner Phelan and Siemsen. “We knew they were key to their team so we really concentrated our defense on those two, and trying to take them two away as much as possible. I thought we did a good job of that. They got some points late, but I thought our varsity did a good job defensively.”
At 4:09 remaining in the first quarter, Quivira Heights, down 13-2, began to string together a 10-3 run of its own.
Siemsen began the run, scoring four points.
Joe Barton, who turned in four points and a team-high eight rebounds, scored two second-chance points after grabbing an offensive rebound.
Gunner Phelan, who rang up 19 points, including 12 in the second half, scored his first two driving to the basket for a layup.
Siemsen finished the T-birds’ run with two more points to draw Quivira Heights to within six points at 18-12. It would be the closest the Thunderbirds would get.
Macksville added another five points to make it 23-12 after eight minutes.
The Mustangs had three players in double digits. Tranbarger, Oak and Kyle Bunker, who had a double-double with 18 points and 11 rebounds. Bunker was also 5 of 6 from the line for 83.3 percent.
“That’s been a luxury for us that not many teams have,” Kuckelman said of having the size advantage with Bunker and Derek Bevan. “We’ve got some big kids that have been a nice thing to have. They play well. They rebound well. They finish well, too.”
HIGH SCHOOL BASKETBALL
At The Stable
No. 3 Macksville 81,
Quivira Heights 46
QUIVIRA HEIGHTS (7-9)
Gunner Phelan 8 3-4 19, Tanner Dahlke 0 0-0 0, Jordan Trevino 2 0-0 4, Joe Barton 2 0-1 4, Bryce Straub 1 0-3 2, Taylor Siemsen 4 0-0 8, Brent Jezek 3 0-0 7. Totals 20 5-10 46.
Adalfo Ibarra 1 0-0 2, Jorge Baray 2 0-0 5, Kyle Bunker 6 5-6 18, Colten Ary 3 0-0 6, Seth Filbert 4 0-0 9, Adam Oak 8 0-0 19, Taylor Tranbarger 5 2-2 14, Efrain Lopez 1 0-0 2, Clayton Wood 1 0-0 2, Derek Bevan 2 0-0 4. Totals 33 7-8 81.
Quivira Heights 12 9 15 10 — 46
Macksville 23 29 21 8 — 81
Three-point goals — Macksville 6 (Oak 3, Baray, Bunker, Filbert); Quivira Heights 1 (Jezek).