In a battle of top 10 teams, tenth-ranked Andover jumped out to a hot start and never let up in a 82-63 win over seventh-ranked McPherson.
Andover made 15 3s, including six by Jack Johnson and three by Jack Taylor. While the Bullpups played better over the course of the game, Andover seized control early and never slowed down.
“Every time we went on a run, they would hit a 3,” head coach Kurt Kinnamon said.
The Trojans opened on a 5-0 run. After senior Cody Stufflebean made 1 of 2 free throws, Andover went on a 9-0 run. Junior Eli Pyle drained a 3 late in the quarter, but Andover held a 21-7 lead after the first eight minutes.
Andover began the second quarter on a 7-3 run before junior Jayton Alexander knocked down a triple. Junior Adam Elloitt also made a 3 late in the second half, but the Bullpups went into halftime trailing 45-23.
The Bullpups played better in the second half, outscoring Andover 40-37 in the third and fourth quarters. But while the Bullpups heated up offensively, Andover remained a constant threat from the perimeter.
“To their credit, they kept playing and they played hard,” Kinnamon said about his team. “There wasn’t any quit in them, and I’m happy with that. But when you give up 82 points, you’re going to get beat.”
Andover was 24 of 46 from the field (52 percent) and an astonishing 15 of 24 from beyond the arc (63 percent). On the flip side, McPherson finished 20 of 52 for 39 percent, including 7 of 21 from 3 for 33 percent.
All five of Andover’s starters reached double figures, led by Johnson who had a team-high 20 points. McPherson sophomore Seth Madron led all scorers with 21 points, while senior Cody Stufflebean and junior Jayton Alexander each had 11. Madron finished one rebound shy of a double-double with nine.
The schedule gets even harder next week as the Bullpups travel to top-ranked Andover Central on Tuesday.
“Xavier [Bell] is going to be the show. He’s really good,” Kinnamon said.