The Abilene High School basketball teams swept Hays on Tuesday night at Abilene High School. The Cowgirls won 62-48, improved to 15-2 on the season and won their 5th game in a row. The Cowboys used a big 4th quarter to win 53-49, it was Abilene’s 8th win in a row and they are now 14-3. The Lady Indians fell to 11-6 and the Indians 9-8 after the losses.
The first game of the night featured two ranked teams, the Cowgirls are #5 in Class 4A and Hays is #10 in 5A. The Lady Indians handed Abilene their worst loss of the season last year in a 57-37 setback. The Cowgirls fell behind last year 19-2 at the end of the first quarter, they didn’t let that happen again Tuesday night. Abilene led 16-9 at the end of the opening quarter and took a 23-16 lead into halftime. The third quarter was a quarter of runs. The Cowgirls got up by 11 at 27-16 with 6:58 to play in the quarter on a bucket by Junior, Abi Lillard. Hays would then go on a 12-0 run to take their first lead of the game on a pair of free throws by Senior, Savannah Schneider to go up 28-27 with 4:47 to play. Abilene would respond with a 9-0 run of their own capped by a bucket by Senior, Sydney Burton to give Abilene a 36-28 advantage with 2:51 left. The Cowgirls wouldn’t trail the rest of the night and led 41-37 at the end of the third.
Abilene won the game at the line in the 4th quarter as they have so many times this season. The Cowgirls hit 17-28 free throws in the final quarter and connected on 28-46 in the game. Hays made 12-16 free throws in the loss. Abilene was led by Seniors, Hannah Willey 22 points and Sydney Burton 20 points on the night. Willey hit on 14-16 at the line and Burton was 8-14.
The Cowboys defeated the Indians for the third year in a row but it was far from easy. Abilene trailed 16-14 at the end of the first quarter and 35-32 at halftime. The Cowboys fell behind by as many as 9 points at 44-35 with 2:02 to play in the third after a bucket by Sophomore Trey Adams. The Indians carried a 46-39 edge into the final quarter. The 4th quarter was a different story. Abilene scored the first 6 points of the 4th and outscored Hays 14-3 in the final quarter. Junior, Travis Beetch gave the Cowboys their first lead of the game on a three-point play with 3:38 to go in the game, with the score 52-48. Beetch finished with a team high 14 points. Senior, James Mayden also reached double figures with 12 points and had 5 steals. Senior, Preston Boyd had been in foul trouble throughout the night, played with tremendous energy to spark his team in the 4th quarter. He made all 3 of his attempts and scored 4 of his 6 points in the final quarter. Senior, Tim Barbieri totaled 8 points and led the team with 8 rebounds.
Abilene will host Clay Center Friday night. Abilene swept Clay Center on January 11th. The Cowgirls won 30-21 while the Cowboy rolled to a 61-37 victory in the first matchup. Clay Center split with Wamego on Tuesday. The Lady Tigers won 43-37 and the Wamego boys won 59-52 in overtime.