By Chris Swick
Sports Editor
McPherson High boys’ coach Kurt Kinnamon made his team a promise before the start of Tuesday’s non-league game with Andale.
“I told them, ‘We go out and, regardless of the outcome, if you can play with that kind of effort, I’ll never mention the Circle game again,” Kinnamon said after his team’s 64-57 overtime win over the Indians. “As far as I’m concerned, we’ve cleared the slate, we’ve gotten back to playing how we want to play.”
Tuesday’s game was the first time the Bullpups had been in a game situation since last week’s 45-44 upset at the hands of Circle High School. The Pups started out showing some rust, as a few mental errors led to several early turnovers that gave the Indians an opportunity to go on a 6-0 run and take a 14-11 lead into the second quarter.
McPherson pulled themselves up from the dust, however and responded with a 12-2 swing in the second to take the momentum and a 25-19 lead at halftime, thanks, partly, to the efforts of Keaton Sorenson, who scored 16 first half points.
Andale freshman Cole Knoblauch took the game into his hands in the third quarter, sinking four three-pointers that swung the favor back towards the Indians 40-38 with 1:28 left in the third. Peter Horton would give the Bullpups back the advantage 41-40 with a three-pointer of his own as time expired in the third.
The two teams would slug it out throughout the fourth quarter, with the lead changing hands four times before Andale’s Hunter Knoblauch would tie it at 52-52 to send it into the extra period.
Marcus Houghton would give break the tie at the 2:48 mark in overtime with a quick jumper in the paint, while Hunter Knoblauch would foul out on the next possession, allowing McPherson to stretch their lead to seven points with 54 seconds left in the period.
Kyler Kinnamon hit 3-of-4 foul shots down the stretch to ensure the 64-57 Bullpup win.
McPherson finished the game shooting 23-of-46 field, making only 2-of-10 from distance, while sinking 16-of-23 from the foul line.
Andale was 20-of-50 from the field and 12-of-29 from behind the three-point arc.
“(Andale) shooting 29 threes really did us a favor because of their size,” Kurt Kinnamon said. “On tape, I watched them and they did a really good job of entering the ball at the post. I think our post guys did a fantastic job.”
Sorenson led all players with 24 points and just missed the double-double with nine rebounds. Kyler Kinnamon added 13 points, seven of which came from the foul line.
Seiler hit the double-double for Andale (12-2) with 16 points and 14 rebounds. Bo Knoblauch had 15 points, while Hunter Knoblauch ended with 14.
The boys junior varsity also was a winner Tuesday, downing the Indians 44-43. Nathan Nutter and Keshawn Sewell led the way with 13 points, each.
The MHS freshmen won their game with Andale 42-39. Kolby Reed had 15, while Jacob Loecker added 11.
McPherson (12-2) hosts Dodge City Friday night. Tip off is set for 7:30 p.m.
Andale (57) — Knoblauch, B. 4-12 3-4 15; Knoblauch, H. 5-12 2-6 14; Seiler 6-15 0-0 16; Hermreck 2-5 0-0 6; Deaver 3-4 0-0 6.
McPherson (64) — Houghton 4-9 0-0 8; Sorenson 9-15 6-7 24; Bahr 3-3 1-2 7; Kinnamon 3-8 7-9 13; Horton, R. 1-6 2-5 4; Horton, P. 3-5 0-0 8.
MHS JV (44) — Pyle 7; Wine 3; Nutter 13; Sewell 13; Gabel 8.
MHS freshmen (42) — Barrett 2; Reed 15; Smith 6; Loecker 11; Scheidegger 4; Martin-Chavez 4