The Wildcats had three games last week in Chapman and came away with three wins earning an Irish Classic tournament championship to begin the season with a statement.
“It was a good way to start the season, and now we come home on Tuesday to face a league opponent in Buhler,” said El Dorado head coach Gary Melcher.
On Friday, El Dorado faced the tournament host Chapman whose two big post players had combined for 24 points in their opening round win against Rossville.
“Through a combination of good positioning by our post defenders and good ball pressure by our perimeter defenders, we were able to hold them to 7 points,” said Melcher.
The Wildcats had solid games from Travis House who led with 13 points, Jared Haury with 12 points and Aaron Riffel with 10 points.
El Dorado led 28-15 at half and never looked back outscoring the Irish 28-24 in the second half to win 56-39.
“Meeting the challenge of their inside game coupled with going 19 for 21 from the line allowed us to get away from them and secure the win,” said Melcher.
Trevor Crain had 7 points, Sam Haines added 6 points and Wes Haines scored 4 points.
On Saturday El Dorado squared off with the Rossville Bulldogs.
“We faced a completely different challenge, as Rossville relied on a pressure defense and transition offense due to their lack of size inside. Again our kids stepped up to the challenge and controlled the game from beginning to end,” said Melcher.
Again House led with 14 points going 7-8 from the line. Crain had 9 points, Haury had 8 points and John Scott scored 6 points.
El Dorado stormed out to a 25-13 lead at halftime. The Wildcats outscored the Bulldoges 27-16 in the second half to win big 52-29.
“We played with good effort in both games and all of our players that were suited up made contributions to the wins,” said Melcher.
For there efforts three Wildcats were selected to the all-tournament team: Juniors Travis House and Jared Haury and Senior Trevor Crain.
“I thought we saw some progress from Tuesday to Saturday in our play. There are a number of areas that lack the consistency that we're looking for, but we have plenty of season left to get better,” said Melcher.