MOUNDRIDGE — Thursday night in Moundridge featured two of the premiere point guards in the Heart of America League.
Inman High School’s Payton Froese finished with a game-high 33 points, while Moundridge High School’s Dillon Vogts led his team with 24 points. In the end, Vogts received more production from his supporting cast as the Wildcats edged the Teutons, 55-48.
After the game, both head coaches had nothing but praise for the other team’s point guard.
“We had no answer for Payton Froese tonight,” Moundridge head coach Vance Unrau said.
Inman head coach Brett Froese felt the same away about Vogts.
“The Vogts kid has really improved his game,” Froese said. “You can tell he’s been working on his game over the summer. It was a fun game if you like point guard play.”
Moundridge never trailed in Thursday night’s game, but Inman was never out of it.
The Wildcats raced out to a 10-2 lead before Inman clawed back to within four. Vogts drilled a 3-pointer late in the first quarter to give the Wildcats a 20-10 lead at the end of one.
The Teutons methodically chipped their way back into the game, and a 3-pointer by Froese with 35 seconds left in the half brought the Teutons within three. But Vogts was there to respond, nailing a spinning, fadeaway three as time expired to send the Wildcats into the break with a six point lead.
Froese would make a couple big 3-pointers in the third quarter to keep Inman in the game, but Moundridge, and Vogts, was always there with an answer. Vogts connected on a deep 3-pointer with 10 seconds left in the third quarter as the Wildcats took a nine point lead into the fourth quarter.
The fourth quarter was much of the same as the Wildcats were able to keep the Teutons within arms length. Inman made a late run, and two 3-pointers by Mason Thiessen in the final minute rimmed in and out, but the Wildcats made their free throws late to hold on for their second victory of the season.
“It’s early, and we’ve got some guys getting their first varsity action,” Unrau said. “We’re asking them to grow up in a hurry in some tight games. We made some mistakes tonight, but we’re going to learn from it and get better.”
Noah Eichelberger chipped in with 15 points for Moundridge, now 2-1 on the season. The Wildcats are back in action on Friday when they host Lyons at 8:30 p.m.
Froese did all he could for Inman, but a lack of a second scoring option doomed the Teutons. Thiessen, who is usually a proficient scorer, finished with seven points.
“Our team is not built with a bunch of firepower,” Froese said. “I knew coming into the season we would have trouble scoring. I was proud of how we hit a couple buckets here and there, but by the time we would claw back, they would hit a couple shots. I’m proud of the team’s effort; Moundridge has a good team.”
Inman, now 2-1, will look to rebound against a tough Hillsboro team at 5:30 p.m. Friday in Moundridge.
Contact Gallagher Martin by email at firstname.lastname@example.org and follow him on Twitter @GMartinSentinel