Second-half surge sends THS boys to Osawatomie Tournament finals
Tonganoxie edges Central Heights in semifinals
The Tonganoxie High boys basketball team is in good spirits these days.
Tonganoxie dropped Central Heights, 45-41, Friday, advancing the Chieftains to the Osawatomie Tournament championship Saturday in the OHS gymnasium.
The win moved Tonganoxie to 2-0 on the season, already equaling last year's win total (2-19).
Central Heights was rolling in the second quarter leading 21-11 before a 7-0 Chieftain run -- two points by Hughes and the last five by Gabe Belobrajdic -- moved THS within three, 21-18, at halftime.
Central Heights then went on a 5-0 run after intermission, but Tonganoxie again countered with a 10-2 run, tying the game at 28. Jeff Hughes accounted for eight of those points, including two three-pointers.
Hughes hit another crucial three in the fourth quarter, breaking a 38-38 tie. A Belobrajdic put-back increased Tonganoxie's lead to 43-38. Central Heights answered with a three-point shot in the final minute, but Tonganoxie held on for the four-point win, as Hughes scored a game-high 19 points.
Belobrjdic, who scored seven, said the team continues to push forward in the early season.
"We're playing a lot more as a team this year," Belobrajdic said. "We're congratulating everyone as a team."
Central Heights made five three-point shots, compared to Tonganoxie's three.
"They made a lot of good shots," Belobrajdic said.
THS will play either St. James of Lenexa or Osawatomie in the tournament finals at 8 p.m. Saturday in Osawatomie.
For more on that game, check back to The MIrror's Web site.