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Spray's slam dunk sparks Panthers
Great Bend's Sage Koelsch dribbles in agaisnt Buhler .jpg


Team effort sparks Panthers 


 The lob pass from Great Bend’s Carter Coombs to Stefan Spray was a thing of beauty.

The finish — EPIC.

Spray’s slam dunk off Coombs’ pass highlighted a stunning 58-50 non-league basketball victory over No. 3 ranked 4A Buhler. The home crowd roared its approval when Spray slammed one home.

“That was the best feeling in the world getting a dunk before the home crowd against a No. 3 ranked team,” Spray said. “I knew the pass was coming because our eyes met.”

Spray was a tower of strength and finesse with a team high 18 points, Sage Koelsch was spectacular with his ballhandling and passing with 12 points. Joseph Moeder scored nine points, banked in a 3-pointer and for good measure — banked in a free throw.

Six Panthers hit 3-pointers as they combined for 8 of 16 from 3-point range.

“This shows our potential that we can compete with any basketball team in the state,” Spray said. “Our Liberal game gave us a boost to our confidence.”

Of yea, Joseph Moeder also made Buhler all-stater Jack Voth work overtime for all of his 24-point night. Voth converted 8 of 22 field goals against Moeder’s hustling effort.

About the only thing Moeder didn’t do was draw a charge as the officials called countless blocks, but few charges.

Great Bend coach Kyle Kriegh believed the home crowd was the difference.

“Listen to our crowd. They believe in you guys,” Kreigh told his team. “Our guys played with confidence. Joseph did a great job on their big guy Voth playing great defense.”

Buhler converted 8 of 24 3-pointers and 8 of 25 inside the stripe as the Panthers harassed shooters all night. Buhler’s Grant Ricker scored 18 points and knocked down five 3-pointers. But everyone else managed 3 of 15 from long range.

The Panthers swung the momentum with a 16-3 scoring run to start the second half. Six Panthers scored points in the period, capped by Tyler Stuhlsatz’s quarter-ending 3-point bomb for a 36-27 lead.

“For Tyler to hit that shot was awesome,” Kreigh said. “To see the response from his teammates was pretty cool.”

Buhler recorded a 23-point fourth period, but the Panthers refused to back down. Koelsch converted seven free throws and Stefan Spray added seven points. Coombs and Braylon Council knocked down critical 3-pointers.

The Panthers (6-9, 2-2 WAC) play Garden City at homecoming Friday. 

Buhler 11 10 27 23 — 50

Great Bend 10 7 19 22 — 58

BUHLER (12-3)—Voth 8-22 6-9 24, Rickewr 6-14 1-2 18, Willard Tross 0-1 1-2 1, Stambaugh 1-3 0-0 2, Meyert 0-5 0-0 0, Hernandez 1-3 1-2 4, Eddy 0-1 1-2 1, Totals 16-49 10-17 50.

GREAT BEND (6-9)—Stefan Spray 8-14 1-3 18, Koelsch 2-4 7-8 12, Stuhlsatz 1-2 0-0 3, Maddox Spray 1-1 0-0 3, Council 2-6 0-0 8, Joseph Moedewr 3-6 2-2 9, Coombs 2-7 0-0 5, Totals 20-40 10-13 58.

3-pointers—B 8-24 (Ricker 5-10, Voth 2-6, Hernandez 1-1, Stambaugh 0--2, meyer 0-5); GB 8-15 (Council 2-5, Joseph Moeder 1-1, Koelsch 1-1, Stuhlsatz 1-1, S. Spray 1-3, Coombs 1-4).