By DUSTIN ARMBRUSTER
Hays 62 – Hutchinson 41
The final margin of Hays High’s opening round win over Hutchinson in the Dodge City Tournament of Champions was 21 points. The game however was much closer than the score indicated.
Neither team scored over the first two minutes of the ball game when Kade Parker and Lane Clark hit back to back three pointers to take a 6-0 lead. Hutchinson got with in one point at 8-7 but never was able to take the lead after Clark hit another three pointer, this one with three seconds left in the first quarter to give Hays a 14-9 lead.
The Indians turned that three pointer into a 13-2 run and lead by as many at 13 in the first half and settled for a ten point halftime lead 29-19.
Each team scored 11 points in the third quarter. Eight of those points came from Brady Werth who had scored only six points in the first half and none in the first quarter.
Less than two minutes into the fourth quarter, Hays built their lead to 12, but Hutchinson scored six straight getting within six at 45-39 with 5:00 to go in the game. That is when Hays High played their best ball of the night out scoring the Salthawks 17-2 rest of the way for the 62-41 win.
Brady Werth led the team with 26 points, 12 rebounds and 4 blocks. Werth was 10-11 from the free throw line. Lane Clark added 14 and was 4-5 on threes.
As a team Hays shot 59% in the second half and 46% for the game 18-39. Hays was 7-18 on threes and made 19 of 22 free throws. Hutchinson was 15-42 from the field for 36% and made 6 of 16 beyond the arc. The Salthawks shot just 10 free throws and made 5.
Hays moves to 10-0 on the year and moves onto the semi-finals of the Tournament of Champions where they will take on Manhattan who upset #5 in 5A Wichita Heights in over time.
Hutchinson drops to 3-7.
Game time is set for 7:00 from the United Wireless Arena in Dodge City.
Rick Keltner Postgame Interview