Ninth-graders pull three wins from past four
While the varsity squad has been on a tear recently, the Tonganoxie boys freshman basketball team has followed suit, winning three of its last four games.
Two of those wins came in the last two rounds of Lansing's tournament last week to help the Chieftains claim the tournament's championship.
The third and most recent win, an 11-point victory over DeSoto Friday, saw the freshmen push their record to two games over .500 at 8-6.
On the way to its Lansing tournament championship, the Chieftains knocked off DeSoto on Jan. 22 and Eudora on Jan. 24 before beating Gardner on Jan. 27.
On Jan. 22 against DeSoto, the Chieftains opened the game strong, going up 14-6 after the first quarter.
Tonganoxie was outscored 20-19 in the middle two quarters before running away with the game in the final period, outscoring DeSoto 22-14 to win the game 55-40.
The team took a break from the tournament the next day, taking on Perry-Lecompton Jan. 23 in Tonganoxie. The Chieftains lost that game 37-43.
After that loss, the Chieftains began their 3-1 stretch, beating Eudora 44-42 the next day in the second round of the tournament to advance to the Jan. 27 championship game.
Facing Gardner in the championship game, the Chieftains jumped out to a 26-19 halftime lead after a 17-point second quarter.
Tonganoxie was up by eight after three, but were barely able to hold on for a three-point win after Gardner scored 20 points in the final period.
But the Chieftains were able to score 15 in the period to win the game 48-45.
"All the players were real consistent at the tournament," said freshman coach Andy Gilner. "It was a team effort by all all the kids knew their roles, and they all came to play."
The Chieftains got their one loss in four games on Jan. 30 at Basehor-Linwood. Tonganoxie lost that game 40-47, before rebounding on Friday to beat the DeSoto Wildcats 47-36.
Head Coach Mike Webb said that he was happy with the way things were going for the team this year.
"My hats off goes to Coach Gilner," Webb said. "He has molded that team into a very fine squad. I'm very proud of the freshmen's success. It really speaks well for the future."