Bloodied Kite still scores 19 in win at SWH
SCHS senior Drew Kite scores two of his game high 19 points during Friday's 79-50 sub-state semi-final win over Southwestern Hts.
By Rod Haxton, editor
Teams can’t hope to stop Drew Kite. They can only hope to slow him down . . . or take him out of the game all together.
Whether or not that was the strategy, that was certainly the result when the Scott Community High School senior had to leave the game twice in the first half because of a bloody mouth during Friday’s Class 3A sub-state semi-final game against Southwestern Heights.
“It kind of fires you up a little bit,” says the 6-4 pivot who still finished with a game high 19 points.
It seemed to fire up the rest of the team as well as the Beavers ripped Heights, 79-50, on the Mustangs’ home floor.
That sets up a rematch with Great West Activities Conference rival Holcomb in Saturday’s finals at 7:30 p.m. The Longhorns slipped by Cheney in the other semi-final, 58-51.
It was a very untypical night for Kite, who didn’t score a point in the first quarter while the Beavers were racing to a 21-7 lead.
Kite’s first points came on a three-point play to open the second period. Meanwhile SWH was able to hang around with some hot shooting in the quarter - including two treys and a pair of three-point plays - that cut the deficit to 35-27 with just under five minutes left in the half.
That’s when Kite took over.
The Beavers kept pounding the ball into the low post where Kite was repeatedly mugged by the shorter Mustangs. During the next three minutes he stepped to the free throw line five times where he was 8-of-9 and he accounted for all 13 Scott City points during that stretch as the Beavers extended their lead to 48-29 with 1:58 left in the half.
The only way that SWH could stop the one-man scoring machine was to take him out of the game with a hard haymaker across his face as he was going up for a basket at the 1:18 mark. Head coach Glenn O’Neil argued with the officials that it should have been an intentional foul, but to no avail.
After Kite missed the first free throw, he left the game to take care of blood and didn’t return for the remainder of the half.
It was only because of some hot shooting by the Mustangs that they were able to stay within 20 points, 51-31, of the Beavers at halftime.
“Give credit to them for some good shooting,” says Kite. “That one kid hit a deep three with my hand in his face. There’s not much you can do when someone is playing like that.”
The Mustangs cooled off in the second half - scoring just 19 points the rest of the night - and the Beavers were able to take control of the game with a balanced attack in the third period. Five players contributed to an 18-4 scoring blitz that ended with a rare three-pointer from Tyler Hess that put his team on top, 69-37, with 2:24 left in the period.
“They were quick,” says Hess, who scored 11 points. “We were expecting that, but we didn’t keep up with them at times. Our offense kept us in the game when they were playing well. Any time you can score 51 points in a half, that’s a pretty good offensive night.”
A lot of that was due to Scott City’s ability to finish off three-point plays - seven for the night - in addition to five three-point baskets.
Senior forward Joey Meyer had a pair of three-point plays in the first two minutes - he finished the night with four - on his way to an 18 point performance. Those three-point plays were sandwiched between a three-point basket by Trey O’Neil to start the game and a fastbreak layup by O’Neil that stretched the lead to 11-2.
“When you have good post guys like Drew and Joey who can make the ‘and-ones’ and Brett (O’Neil) does a great job of getting the ball into them, you can score a lot of points in a hurry,” says Hess. “Plus we have great passers and shooters who can get the job done from the outside, so we are capable of putting up some big numbers.”
Offense wasn’t the concern for the Beavers following Friday’s win. It was defense.
“Our defense wasn’t as good tonight as it has been,” Kite says. “There are a couple of things we need to work on before we play Holcomb.”
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