Saints pull off upset of Wellington in first round
After surrendering all of a 10-point lead to top-seeded Wellington, the fifth-seeded Saint Paul Saints scored the final four points, en route to a 51-48 upset in the first pool-play game for both teams in the Lafayette County Tourna-ment Monday at Wellington.
Going into the fourth quarter trailing 44-35, Todd Shan-non's Tigers mounted a rally, eventually tying the game 47-47 on a fastbreak basket by Dylon Register with 3 minutes, 40 seconds remaining in the game.
The Saints turned over the ball three straight possessions, but Wellington was unable to capitalize, Brandon Niendick missing a two-point shot and a three-point attempt, and Blake Seitz being hit with a charging foul, his fifth, with 2:08 left.
Even without their leading scorer, the Tigers were able to cause another turnover, Regis-ter breaking the tie by hitting one of two free-throw tosses with 2:00 remaining.
After an SPLHS timeout and turnover, Clint Stuenkel stole back the ball for the Saints.
The ball rotated to Sam Schmidt in the front court. He hit a cutting-to-the-basket Seth Dahlke with a pass. Dahlke converted the layup for a 49-48 SPLHS advantage with 1:10 to play.
Taylor Bryant misfired from behind the three-point arc, and the Tigers were forced to foul twice, sending Dahlke to the line for a one-and-one with 17 seconds left.
Dahlke misfired on the front end, Taylor Bryant grabbing the carom.
Taylor Bryant eventually had an open shot from inside the free-throw circle in the lane to tie the game with less than 10 seconds on the clock, but it missed.
Schmidt hauled in the rebound, which was knocked out of bounds by WNHS.
The inbounds pass went to Schmidt, who was fouled and endured two timeouts Shannon to drain both of his one-and-one chances with 3 seconds left.
All the Tigers were able to manage was a beyond-half-court heave from Christian Bryant that was no good as the final buzzer sounded.
Dahlke paced the Saints with 16 points, including 10 and two three-point shots in the third quarter. Brandon Haake added 14 points, including two first-half threes. Schmidt finished with nine points.
Seitz scored 14 points and Niendick 13. including three three-pointers, for the Tigers, who lost for the first time this season.
In the other boys' game, second-seeded Higginsville hammered the No. 6 Lexing-ton Minutemen 61-19. The Huskers had 14 points from DeShaun Thirkield and 13 points from Tyrell Thirkield. Clint Fergason had eight points for Lexington.
The first girls' game went down to the wire before top-seeded Concordia outlasted No. 5-seeded Higginsville 47-40, the Lady Orioles outscoring HHS 39-27 in the second half.
Hailee Langkrahr paced the Lady Orioles, who managed only 16 of 35 from the free-throw line, with 16 points, including one three. Katlin Murray added 10 points.
Abbie Mahnken scored nine points and Casey Warren eight for the Lady Huskers.
The other girls' game was a no-contest as the No. 2-seeded Saint Paul Lady Saints thumped No. 6 Santa Fe 62-31.
Marissa Brackman poured in 19 points (one three-pointer), Devon Heins three threes and 16 points and Audrey Mehl 14 points for SPLHS.
Gia Baldwin paced the Lady Chiefs with 12 points. Brooke Barnett added nine points.
It was incorrect in last week's paper that the Lafayette County Tournament would be played at Concordia.
All of the games, which finish up with three games Saturday afternoon, are being played at Wellington.