The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas on January 25, 1996 · Page 19
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The Salina Journal from Salina, Kansas · Page 19

Salina, Kansas
Issue Date:
Thursday, January 25, 1996
Page 19
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JA1 THE SALlti/rJoURNAL T THE BOTTOM LINE BOB DAVIDSON The Sallna Journal SCOREBOARD/ D2 COLLEGE BASKETBALL / D3 FOOTBALL / D4 D T OKLAHOMA STATE-KANSAS STATE Wildcats hang on to top OSU climb up Mt. Basketball nears the end •. •' •/*>. The long and arduous 4-1/2 V'-'C| month climb up the 1995-96 college ' basketball mountain is nearly two- '. thirds complete. By now it's fairly clear who's going to scale the summit, who's going to be left hanging, and who's making a speedy return to base- camp, i.e. crash and burn. The first 2-1/2 months have been revealing. We've seen everything from glorious to gory, from so-so to so long. •,;• . The remaining six weeks will be exhilarating for some, heartbreaking for others and, for a few, a veritable waste of time. Here's a mid-winter glance at the climbers of Mount Basketball: Near the crest Kansas — No. 3 KU has had first- half problems hi several games, but has righted itself in the second half each time, except once (Temple). The Jayhawks appear to be the class of the Big Eight with the other seven entries in a pitched battle for second. KU will reach the Big Eight summit and will make a serious bid for the NCAA peak. It won't be easy. Kentucky, for one, looks to have a team of expert .climbers. Fdrt Hays State —The Tigers, ranked second in NCAA Division n, weren't serious contenders in November, but their climb has been impressive. They're shooting a nation's-best 57 percent from the field as a team and an incredible 45.4 percent from 3-point range. Coach Gary Garner has proven teams can win with junior college and four-year transfers. So, will the Tigers succeed outside the lightly-regarded Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference? Bet your spiked boots they will. Still climbing Kansas State — The Wildcats are making a run at the crest. Don't be surprised if they get there. The 'Cats are bigger, stronger, quicker and deeper. ....... But the biggest change is on defense, where K-State has frustrated and dominated the opposition. Elliot Hatcher and Tyrone Davis have provided senior leadership. The freshmen and newcomers have had an immediate impact. Second place in the Big Eight and an NCAA Tournament bid are well within their reach. Kansas Wesleyan — The second-semester addition of 6-foot-7' twins Dwight and Dwayne Coleman make the Coyotes a threat to win the KCAC Tournament. The Colemans give Coach Jerry Jones a formidable inside game to go with perimeter sharpshooters Jason Gentz and Fred Goodnight. Stay tuned. Cloud County — The Thunderbirds proved they're for real last week with a convincing victories over Butler County and Colby. Foward Michael Bowens, who signed with K-State out of high school, has come of age and is leading the way. Brown Mackie — The hot and cold Lions are a solid team when they get all their players on the court and on the same page. Center Marvin Wilson is the key. Inconsistency has hindered a team that seemingly has the weapons to contend. Hanging by a thread Bethany — The Swedes have struggled mightily; but help may the way this, weekend if 6-9 center Mark Dalton and guard Brian Sher- mjin become eligible. 1 The Swedes' first concern is qualifying for the KCAC postseason •• tournament. Freefall Wichita State — This isn't '< what Shocker fans had in mind in October. After six consecutive losing seasons, they were told better days were just around the corner. All they've gotten so far is five victories in 19 games. Coach Scott Thompson, who has won 37 of the 100 games he's coached at WSU, is under relentless pressure. Wichita talk radio is rife with calls for Thompson's job. The coach of choice is longtime Butler County coach Randy Smithson, a WSU alumn. The Shockers, who are last in the Missouri Valley Conference ... with a 1-8 record, need a virtual ?' miracle to qualify for the conference tournament. Kansas State downs O-State 62-59 to take over sole possession of second place By HAROLD BECHARD The Salina Journal MANHATTAN — If Kansas State expected short-handed Oklahoma State to pack it in ; Wednesday night, it didn't take the Wildcats !•long to realize that wouldn't happen. | Playing without starting point-guard Andre ipweihs, the visiting Cowboys gave K-State all ' it wanted before the Wildcats squeezed out a T SOUTHEAST OF SALINE TOURNAMENT 62-59 victory in Bramlage Coliseum. Owens stayed home after missing a class Tuesday, but K-State still struggled to its 13th win of the season. . "(OSU coach) Eddie Sutton doesn't get four different teams in the NCAA Tournament with mirrors," K-State coach Tom Asbury said. "Under the conditions, his team came in, played hard and played well. "There's no quit in the Cowboys. They're going to beat some people." But the Cowboys haven't beaten anyone in the Big Eight yet, falling to 0-4 in the league and 10-6 overall. "Our effort was good, but we got tired and didn't shoot well," Sutton said. "Our free throws also hurt us." They hurt in a big way. The Cowboys were just 3 of 10 from the line in the final 9-1/2 minutes. But K-State also struggled in improving to 41 in the Big Eight and 13-4 overall. The Wildcats hit just 42 percent from the field and 50 from the free throw line. "I told my staff in the locker room that I don't think we could have won this game a year ago," said Asbury, whose team has won 10 of its last ll games. "But we made it a little harder than it had to be." ' , The Wildcats seemed in command with 4:18 remaining after an 18-footer from the top of the key by Aaron Swartzendruber to give them a nine-point lead (57-48). But two poor possessions by K-State, a 3- pointer by Adrian Peterson and a layup from! Chianti Roberts made it a 57-54 game with 1:57 remaining. Elliot Hatcher then hit a 10-foot runner in the lane with 1:08 left to give K-State a five- point lead (59-54), but Roberts followed with a short bank shot with 43 seconds left to make it a 59-56 game. See WILDCATS, Page D3 V KANSAS WESLEYAN KELLY PRESNELL/The Salina Journal Ellsworth's Mandy Johnson (left) fights Sallna's South's. Megan Dally (center) and Leah Wahlgren for a loose ball Wednesday. Late run ensures Cougars a victory Strong defense pays off for South in 33-26 win over Ellsworth By LARRY MORITZ The Salina Journal GYPSUM — On a night when the defenses ruled, Salina South found just enough offense when it needed it to put away Ellsworth. The Cougar girls outscored Ellsworth 8-2 in the game's final four minutes to take a 33-26 victory in a pool play contest Wednesday at the Southeast of Saline Invitational. "I knew it was going to be that kind of game," said South coach Bruce Erickson, whose team won its fourth consecutive game. "We haven't played in more than a week and in our practices we've spent 95 percent of our time on defense and five percent on offense. "Right now we're trying to get ourselves better on the defensive side. We've been giving up way to many shots in the 15-foot area and we're working hard to try to stop that. We did tonight except for about a four-minute stretch in the fourth quarter." South (8-3) will meet Junction City at 4:30 p.m. today, with the winner earning a spot in Friday's tourney championship contest. Ellsworth (3-8) is assured a spot in the fifth-place contest, where it will meet Concordia at 4:30 Friday. "The girls played very hard and I have nothing but praise for them," Ellsworth coach Terry Maddux said. "We don't shoot the ball particularly well so we rely a lot on our defense, and that's as well as we've played in our matchup zone this year." The Bearcats defense gave South plenty of problems as the Cougars committed 26 turnovers and attempted only 23 shots from the field. Despite shooting 62 percent (8 of 13) in the first half, South led by only seven points at halftime, 17-10. "Every time you play a Terry Maddux team, you know that nobody plays that zone as good as his teams," Erickson said. "We saw some opportunities in it but were late with our passes or didn't feel comfortable throwing it in to them." South was up 25-15 with 6:41 remaining in the final period, but after a Maddux timeout, Ellsworth put up nine unanswered points — five from senior guard Rebecca Bigham — to cut the lead to one. But the Bearcats never had a shot at taking the lead. Megan Daily and Leah Wahlgren made two free throws apiece and Wahlgren's only basket of the game put her team back in control, 31-24 with under three minutes to play. Southeast of Saline girls pound Concordia Trojans jump out to big lead and coast to 63-42 victory By LARRY MORITZ The Salina Journal GYPSUM—It was only appropriate that the Southeast of Saline girls basketball squad opened pool play swimmingly. \ Solid out of the chute, the Tro- Vjans bolted to a big lead over ' Concordia and cruised to a 63-42 win in a pool play contest Wednesday at the Southeast In- vitational. The victory pits the host school against Abilene at 6 p.m. today where the winner earns a spot in the tournament championship game Friday. "This was definitely one of our better ball games of the year," Southeast coach Wayne Sager said. "The girls were pumped up to play in our home tournament and they came on ' the floor ready to put some real good quarters together for us tonight. "We like to stress the defense but the kids sure love to hit some shots and it gets them emotionally up. It went real well for us in the first half." Southeast (6-5) hit 7 of 8 shots and scored 14 unanswered points during one stretch while building a 32-10 lead midway through the second quarter. Junior Angle Riffel had nine points and Vicki Florine added a pair of 3-pointers to lead the Trojans first-half attack, while Concordia hurt its own cause with 18 turnovers before the break. That quick start proved critical for the Panthers after they played Southeast even in the KW routs Threshers Coyotes use strong inside-outside game to punish Threshers, 90-71, in a Kansas Conference contest By BOB DAVIDSON The Salina Journal The Bethel Threshers must know how the brave defenders at the Alamo felt. No matter which way they turned they found themselves under attack. Kansas Wesleyan came at the Threshers inside, outside and from all points in-between Wednesday night en route to a 90-71 Kansas Conference victory at Muir Gymnasium. "This was the first time we were able to have a run from the beginning all the way through," Wesleyan coach Jerry Jones said. Wesleyan raises its record to 6-11 overall, 44 in the KCAC. Bethel falls to 6-11 and 3-5. The Coyotes were simply bigger, stronger and quicker. • Outside — Jason Gentz, Wesleyan's leading scorer on the season, scored 23 points, including 4 of 6 shooting from 3-point range. Point guard Shawn Ellis and forward Fred Goodnight hit two 3-pointers each and Mike Bell and Tony Ingram one apiece. • Inside—Dwayne and Dwight Coleman hounded and harassed the smaller Threshers. Dwayne scored 16 points and grabbed six JONES rebounds while twin brother Dwight had 14 points and five rebounds. "We played a zone and put the big guys underneath and Gentz in the middle to go from side to side," Jones said. "Our two point guards (Ellis and Bell) played well on offense and defense. And the guys off the bench came in and we didn't slow down. We stayed at a high caliber." Ellis was outstanding, handing out 13 assists and scoring eight points. Bell had five points and four assists. Wesleyan shot 59,7 percent from the field (37 of 62), including 10 of 16 from 3-point range. Bethel shot 25 of 76 (32.9 percent) from the field. Nick Harris led Bethel with 15 points. Eddie Sifuentes and Nathan Bailey had 12 each. Bethel scored the first four points of the game, but Wesleyan tallied 29 of the next 34 and led 39-24 at halftime. Bethel crept within eight, 43-35 with 16:50 left in the game, but got no closer. Wesleyan led by as many as 27 before Jones cleared the bench with four minutes left. "They obviously hurt us in the middle," Bethel coach Mark Yoder said. "We don't have a strong inside post player. We couldn't hit a basket against their zone. We dug a big hole that was tough to fight out of. "We relied on the 3-point shot too much early in the game. We didn't have the patience to get it inside." second half. Concordia (2-9) went to its inside strength, as 5- foot-11 senior Crystal Applebee and 6-2 sophomore Jenny Horkman combined for 20 of their 29 points after halftime. "Southeast is a balanced team where there's nobody you can really key on," Concordia coach David Gieber said. "But the whole story is they were ready to play and we weren't." Southeast received season high scoring totals from Riffel (16 points) and junior Sarah Chrisman (10) off the bench. Florine also had 12 points. T KSU FOOTBALL KSU's Wiren pleads guilty to charges By The Associated Press MANHATTAN — A Kansas State University football player accused in an attack that injured two men and a dog has pleaded guilty to criminal property damage and criminal trespassing. Wildcats defensive end Nyle Wiren, 23, entered his plea Monday in Riley County District Court. Under a plea agreement, prosecutors dropped charges of battery, conspiracy to commit battery and a charge of cruelty to animals. Wiren, a junior from Wichita, was sentenced to 12 months' probation and ordered to write a letter of W |p FN apology to the men who " IHtN were attacked. Wiren also must complete anger management counseling, perform 25 hours of community service and pay restitution and court costs. Wiren, a junior, was accused along with quarterback Brian Kavanagh, 22, and linebacker Percell Gaskins, 23, a senior from Ormond Beach, Fla., in the Aug. 20 attack. Police said the attack took place about 10 a.m., allegedly in retaliation for an earlier confrontation. SUGGESTIONS? CALL BOB DAVIDSON, SPORTS EDITOR, AT (913) 823-6363 OR 1-800-827-6363 \

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