Braves duo leads charge in defeat of THS boys
Fueled by big nights from a couple of Braves who were due for a scoring outburst, the Bonner Springs High boys basketball team held off visiting Tonganoxie on Tuesday, 75-66.
BSHS junior Stevie Williams and senior Juan Pichardo came into the Kaw Valley League game averaging 8.8 points apiece — not exactly what coach Andy Price was expecting from the duo.
“Our two guys that are good scorers who haven’t scored very much for us in the first semester, we talked about getting them more touches and having them be more aggressive looking to score,” Price said after the win.
Pichardo and Williams responded to the challenge, combining to put up 39 points.
Williams came out of the gate determined to be a factor, scoring 10 of his 19 points in the first five minutes, leading the Braves (3-2 overall, 2-2 KVL) to an early advantage.
Showing off his strength and hops, Williams converted a pair of three-point plays after drawing fouls in the first two minutes. Those scores, bookended by junior Jourdaine Smallwood’s 3-pointer seconds after the opening tip and a basket inside from Brett Steuart, put the Chieftains (2-3, 0-3) in a quick 11-2 hole.
THS coach Shawn Phillips said the early deficit was becoming too familiar a scenario.
“It seems like we’re kind of going in a trend where we don’t start well,” Phillips said. “We were down 10 just three of four minutes into the game, and that’s what the (difference in) score ended up being down the stretch, so we’ve got to find a way to come out and play right from the very beginning.”
Even after Tonganoxie fought back from a 10-point hole in the first with a 9-0 run — Dane Erickson scored in the paint, Dylan Scates hit a 3-pointer and Colby Yates converted a jumper and a layup — the Braves were able to regain some distance.
Pichardo was crucial in the Braves’ response, scoring 14 of his team-high 20 points in the second quarter, helping BSHS to a 47-37 halftime lead.
Seemingly every time THS made a push, Pichardo would answer.
Price said it was nice to see his scoring threats deliver. “It sure helps when shots are falling and you can shoot with confidence,” the coach said.
Down 10 points throughout most of the second half, the Chieftains cut the lead to four with a 6-0 run late in the fourth quarter — Jeremy Carlisle, Austin Vickers and Erickson each hit two free throws.
However, Bonner Springs bounced right back with a 7-2 run.
Tonganoxie plays host to Mill Valley at 7:30 p.m. on Friday.
Score by quarters
THS 18 19 13 16 — 66
BSHS 22 25 13 15 — 75
Dane Erickson 9 6-12 24, Dylan Scates 4 0-0 9, Colby Yates 5 0-0 11, Jeremy Carlisle 4 8-8 16, Austin Vickers 0 2-5 2, John Lean 1 0-0 2, Ben Williams 1 0-0 2.
Bonner Springs scoring
Stevie Williams 8 3-5 19, Jourdaine Smallwood 2 0-0 6, Juan Pichardo 7 4-4 20, J.J. Jackson 2 1-2 6, Brett Stewart 4 3-4 12, B.J. Watson 1 3-4 6, Joseph Dooley 0 2-2 2.