Butler County Times Gazette
  • Orioles drop season opener to Mulvane

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  • MULVANE—There was not enough Augusta could do to slow down Mulvane’s inside attack.
    The Wildcats’ bigger, stronger post players sliced through the middle of the paint for easy baskets, which carried Mulvane to a 62-53 victory Friday night in the boys basketball season opener.
    “They were just more physical,” coach David Stephenson said. “That’s a bunch of football kids from a really good football team that banged us around, and we just got into too much foul trouble. But we did have some younger kids step up and keep us in the game.”
    At times, Augusta’s offense looked sharp and played its style. The first quarter got frenetic and up-tempo. The Orioles had a quick 8-0 spurt to close the quarter after Connor Hurst swished a 3-pointer, Brandon Smith made a jumper and Kesten Trebbe buried another three.
    But as the game wore on, Mulvane’s inside game and rebounding edge (36-25) took its toll. It also didn’t help that the Orioles didn’t get the shots they wanted.
    “I told the kids it looked like they had a lack of confidence, and I don’t know why,” Stephenson said. “Shots we just nail every day all day long [in practice], but we just had a deer-in-the-headlights look.”
    Kolton Schenker hit a pull-up jumper, then Hurst hit a 3-pointer off the glass for a 30-29 Oriole lead early in the third quarter. Mulvane began seizing control of the game with a pair of threes and a pair of transition baskets. The Wildcats outscored the Orioles 15-5 to close the quarter and never looked back.
    Augusta will play its home opener next Friday against Abilene.
    Mulvane 62, Augusta 53
    Augusta—Finch 5 1-3 11, Hurst 4 1-2 11 (2), Trebbe 1 5-7 8 (1), Schenker 3 0-0 6, Steinkamp 2 1-2 6 (1), Albright 0 4-4 4, Winter 1 0-0 3 (1), Laubhan 1 0-0 2, Smith 1 0-2, 2, McEachern 0 0-2, 0. Team—18 12-20 53 (5).

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