WICHITA – It’s easy to fall in love with the 3-point basket. Fans and players love it. Coaches can have a complicated relationship with the shot. Stat geeks are fascinated by the shot, using analytics to debate whether it is too hard or too easy to make. But in all that clutter, sometimes a simple fact is lost amid the excitement that the deep ball can create: the scoreboard has no story. It doesn’t care how you get to the end of the game; it only cares which side is higher when the clock drips to triple zero.
Bishop Carroll learned that lesson by increasing their offensive output by going away from the shot in the second half. Andover learned that lesson the hard way by missing a tying free throw with 0.4 seconds left to drop a 57-56 heartbreaker to Bishop Carroll on Friday evening in the GWAL/AVCTL Basketball Challenge at Charles Koch Arena on the campus of Wichita State. The loss was in spite of a 21-4 scoring edge beyond the arc for the Trojans.
The teams both started the game playing at a breakneck pace that didn’t allow either offense to make perfect decisions. The teams combined to shoot just 7-for-20 in the first half from the field, including a woeful 2-for-14 combined from the coveted extra-point arc. Still, the three played a big part in the outcome of the contest, starting with the closure of the opening quarter when Carroll junior guard Luke Evans swished a half-court shot to tie the game at nine entering the second.
Neither team was able to claim control in the second due to rushed offense and solid defense by both teams. Carroll outscored Andover from the field in the period 10-3. In fact the Trojans only attempted two field goals in the second. The Trojans kept pace thanks to the free throw line, drilling 6-of-9 tries in the period.
The teams seemed eager to put the first half behind them and came out blazing in the second half. The pace hadn’t changed from earlier in the game, but the execution was miles better than the first half. The teams combined to hit seven of their first eight shots of the half, but it was Andover which had the better success early in the third behind 8-for-9 shooting overall. The Trojans also buried 5-of-6 3-pointers.
Senior Chase Oberg opened the period by connecting on three of his game-high five 3-pointers en route to a team-high 17 points. His deep shooting was critical in a 21-9 Trojan run in the period to open up a 39-29 Andover lead with under three minutes to go in the third period.
The Trojans couldn’t sustain their efficiency however and began to play a bit out of control in the last two minutes of the period, reverting to the form that saw them commit eight turnovers in the first half and 16 in the game. That let Carroll creep in closer on 9-of-14 shooting in the quarter and end the period down 42-40.
The Golden Eagles would take the lead early in the fourth quarter and then trade it back and forth with Andover in a game that became a tug-of-war affair with both teams making plays down the stretch. Sophomore power forward Clay Cundiff’s offense was huge in the fourth quarter when he scored eight of his game-high 18 points.
Carroll’s offensive efficiency was much higher in the second half mainly due to the abandonment of the much beloved or hated 3-point shot. Carroll hit just one of its nine heaves from deep in the first half. Senior RJ Biby drilled the only 3-pointer the Eagles tried in the second half. The emphasis on getting the ball inside led the Eagles to shooting much higher percentage shots (they hit 14-of-21 field goals in the half) and more tries at the free throw line (8-for-10 in the second half compared to just 1-for-2 in the first).
Despite the improvement, the Golden Eagles could not shake Andover until the game’s last tenths of a second. Cundiff’s pair of free throws put the Eagles in front with two minutes to go in the game, but Andover was poised to tie after senior Nick Kellerman scored and was fouled, but his free throw to tie the game was missed. Bishop Carroll couldn’t grab the rebound and lost it out of bounds. That set up a wild play during which Andover threw the ball to the corner where senior Jacob Herrs had to leap to save it for the Trojans who then found senior Jacob Wilson on a cut down the key for the last of his 11 points to trade the lead back to 56-55 Andover with 33.2 seconds remaining in the game.
Carroll took control again after an incredible 360 degree spin move by Logan Kennedy led to a layup off the backboard to give the Eagles a 57-56 edge with 17 seconds left. Andover called time out and off the inbounds passed the ball to Oberg whose NBA range three from the wing missed short off the rim. A scrum for the rebound near the semicircle drew a whistle and a foul on Carroll’s Cundiff who knocked over Oberg chasing after the ball.
Oberg faced three possible outcomes as he stepped to the line with 0.4 seconds remaining in the game to shoot the front end of a one and one foul shot. He had a chance to tie, win, or lose the game. Despite a chance for a miracle tip to win the game, Andover head coach Chad Wilmott pulled his players off the lane to leave it full of Golden Eagles and absent of Trojans. Oberg’s free throw, like his three, hit off the rim and Carroll grabbed an uncontested rebound to finally claim victory.
Luke Evans added 11 points and a game-high seven rebounds for the Golden Eagles. Oberg grabbed a team-high five rebounds in defeat for Andover.
Andover 9 9 24 14 – 56
Bishop Carroll 9 11 17 20 – 57
Andover: Oberg 17, Wilson 11, Kellerman 9, Winnish 7, Herrs 5, Wreath 4, Hammar 2, Bell 1.
Carroll: Cundiff 18, Evans 11, Kennedy 8, Jones 7, Biby 5, Pracht 4, Becker 2, Theis 2.
Halftime: 20-18 Carroll. Three-Point Goals: Andover 7-17 (Oberg 5-9, Wilson 2-4, Hammar 0-2, Herrs 0-1, Kellerman 0-1). Carroll 2-10 (Biby 1-3, Evans 1-2, Cundiff 0-2, Mans 0-2, Pracht 0-1).
Rebounds: 20-15 Carroll. Turnovers: Andover 16. Carroll 13.
Lady Trojans Move Past Southeast
Sophomore guard Kylee Gaddis lit up the Golden Buffaloes early and often and junior center Isabelle Reynolds was a defensive monster in the paint as Andover dispatched Wichita Southeast 52-42 in the GWAL/AVCTL Basketball Challenge at Charles Koch Arena on the campus of Wichita State Friday afternoon.
Gaddis started the scoring for Andover at the free throw line by hitting three of four shots and the Buffaloes kept pace early to tie the game at three. Then Gaddis started finding her shot from the field, hitting back-to-back 3-pointers to put the Trojans in charge 9-3 with just under five minutes to go in the first quarter. She would go on to connect on a third trifecta in the period and finished with 12 of Andover’s 14 in the frame and the Trojans led 14-8 after one.
Wichita Southeast finally started to make up some of their early deficit on the glass in the second quarter and pulled within four late in the period thanks to consecutive possessions that ended with a second-chance basket. But there again was Gaddis for the Trojans, converting a three-point play near the end of the first half to stake Andover to a 27-20 halftime lead.
The Golden Buffaloes could never reliably hit shots in the game, sputtering to a 3-for-12 start from the floor out of the gate and finishing just 14-for-49 in the contest. Andover enjoyed a huge advantage outside by hitting six 3-pointers and holding the Lady Buffaloes to none. Sophomore guard Shanti Henry finished with 13 points and nailed three triples and Gaddis connected on the other three for Andover.
Gaddis continued her tear at the start of the second half by opening the scoring in the third period with a layup and then ending the Golden Buffaloes’ first possession moments later with a steal. An 11-4 Trojan run pushed the advantage to 14 points with five minutes to play in the period.
It seemed as though Andover would simply coast to the victory, but right on cue with the weekend’s forecast, the Trojans offense iced up in the final period. Shanti Henry hit an early 3-pointer in the fourth, but that was the only shot from the field Andover could muster as the Trojans missed all five of their other shots from the field. Gaddis vanished from the offense as well; the fourth was the only period in which she did not score.
The Trojan mistakes were due in large part to increased intensity on the part of the Southeast defense, and the Thundering Herd attacked the lane on the dribble and were rewarded for their efforts by attempting 10 foul shots in the session, sinking seven. All the drama might have been avoided if Andover had kept pace at the foul line, but the cold shooting seemed to infect the Trojans there as well as they missed seven foul shots in the period. To the rescue was sophomore Hayley Jones who nailed all six of her shots at the stripe to help preserve the lead and the win.
Much of Southeast’s poor shooting came on second-chance opportunities inside the painted area. Much of the credit for that has to go to junior Hannah Showalter who played like a woman among girls recording an unofficial double-double with 12 rebounds and a staggering 10 blocks in the game. Kaitlyn Seabrook also finished with double-digit rebounding by snaring 12.
After the first quarter, Southeast started attacking the glass much more consistently and found success, winning the overall rebounding battle by one over Andover (unofficially 36-35). Liz Taylor was the only consistent threat from the field for Southeast scoring 11 points, but Sandra Pollard found success by getting to the free throw line in the final period. Pollard erupted for nine in the fourth quarter and five came from the line on 5-of-6 shooting.
Gaddis led Andover with a game-high 24 points while hitting 7-of-8 foul shots. Pollard led Southeast with 13 points in the game and freshman Talia Collins competed fiercely on the glass grabbing a team-high 12 rebounds.
Andover 14 13 14 11 – 52
Wichita Southeast 8 12 9 13 – 42
Andover: Gaddis 24, Henry 11, Jones 8, Seabrook 5, Showalter 2.
Wichita Southeast: Pollard 13, Taylor 11, Verge 5, Adams 4, Johnson 4, Collins 3, Johnson 2.
Halftime: 27-20 Andover. 3-Point Goals: Andover 6-13 (Gaddis 3-6, Henry 3-7). Wichita Southeast 0-3 (Adams 0-1, Dixon 0-1, Pollard 0-1). Free Throws: Andover 15-27 (Gaddis 7-8, Jones 6-6, Henry 2-6, Seabrook 1-4, Reynolds 0-2). Wichita Southeast 14-21 (Pollard 9-12, Taylor 3-5, Collins 1-2, Verge 1-3).