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Abilene Splits at Smoky Valley Friday Night

Trent SanchezDecember 3, 2022

pictured is Claira Dannefer, picture courtesy of Brad Anderson 

Smoky Valley Lady Vikings 73 Abilene 39

Lindsborg – Smoky Valley picked up right where they left off last season Friday night in their opener with Abilene.  The Lady Vikings went 15-7 last year under Jason Drouillard, who is now in his second season.  It was their best season in over a decade.

Smoky Valley got off to a fast start as they lead 25-8 after the 1st quarter, 53-23 at halftime and 69-32 after the 3rd quarter.  They led by as many as 39 points at 71-32 early in the 4th quarter. There was a running clock in the 4th quarter.  The Lady Vikings had three players in double-figures, led by Adrian Hazelwood’s 25 points.  The 5’7” Junior, is the only starter back from last season.  Smoky Valley also got 10 points from Clara McElroy, Katja Blanchat and Eva Malm.

Abilene debuted first year head coach Shawn Herrman.  He is a 2002 graduate of AHS and is their all-time leading scorer.  He went on to start 4 years at Emporia State and left that program as the 11th all-time leading scorer.  He took over a Cowgirl program that went 3-18 last season and that has just 6 wins in the last 3 seasons.  The Cowgirls got a huge night from 6’ Junior, Claira Dannefer, who finished with a career high 26 points in the loss.

Abilene Cowboys 73 Smoky Valley 52

Lindsborg – Just like in the girl’s game, in the boy’s contest, the winner got off to a fast start.  Abilene jumped out to a 22-10 1st quarter lead and never looked back.  They went on to lead 39-23 at halftime and 52-34 after 3 quarters.  Their biggest lead was 67-41 with 3:27 left in the game.

The Cowboys entered the game coming off back-to-back State appearances under 3rd year Head Coach, Erik Graefe.  Abilene brought back 2 starters from that team in Senior, Grant Waite and Senior, Triston Cottone.  Cottone, a 6’1” guard, and the returning leading scorer from last season, erupted for a career-high 26 points in the victory.  The Cowboys also got double-figures from Stocton Timbrook and Weston Rock, who both finished with 10 points.

Abilene will host Rock Creek on Tuesday.  Rock Creek swept Clay Center on the road Friday night,  The Lady Mustangs won 37-27, while the Mustangs won 55-53 in OT.

Copyright © Meridian Media, 2023. All Rights Reserved. No part of this story may be reproduced without Meridian Media’s express consent.

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