WAITSBURG - Homestanding Waitsburg-Prescott completed a first-half sweep of the Southeast 2B District here Friday night in boys basketball action.
W-P answered every Liberty Christian challenge and posted a 61-42 win to wrap up the first half of league play with a perfect 6-0 mark. Waitsburg-Prescott began the second half Saturday night at Dayton.
"I was really proud of the kids," W-P coach TJ Scott said. "We didn't have any weaknesses today. That's a good team (LC). We played one of our better games tonight."
Zach Bartlow's seven first-quarter points propelled W-P to a 14-4 lead with two seconds left in the quarter. Jake Siefken threw up a half-court heave that went in as the buzzer sounded and the Patriots were down 14-7 after one.
The Patriots kept the momentum as Bryan Corrigan hit a bucket with 4:50 left in the half to pull LC even at 16-16.
"We came out and took control in the first," Scott said. "We got a lot of good shots and played really good defense against them. Then (Siefken) hits a half-court shot and it kind of deflated us. They come out in the next quarter on a 9-2 run, and it was tied up. Our kids were able to calm down and get back into the flow of the game and play at our tempo. We were able to extend it out at the half."
A Bartlow free throw put W-P ahead for good at 17-16 with 4:34 left, and W-P got four points from Matt Hamilton and a trey from Tre Brannock to key a 12-4 run to close the half. W-P went to the locker room up 28-20.
"We came out strong and worked real hard," W-P center Hamilton said. "They kind of fed off the buzzer-beater three, but we came back and took the lead again."
Hamilton missed the first W-P shot of the second half, but he battled for the loose ball and put it back to move W-P to a 31-20 margin 30 seconds into the half. Kris Cady's basket kept the lead at 11 points, 33-22, before Siefken scored two of his team-high 16 to get LC within 33-24 with 5:48 left in the third. TJ Hofer answered with a trey for W-P and the Patriots would get no closer the rest of the way.
"We extended it (the lead) out and they brought it back," Scott said. "They are a good team, and they're going to make runs. You have to be able to take the hit, and then extend it (the lead) back out. We did a great job of that tonight."
W-P hit 7-of-12 from the floor over the last eight minutes and Dustin Wooderchak's bucket at the 2:07 mark pushed the W-P lead to 59-39. Dalton Estes made two free throws with 30 seconds to play to finish off the W-P scoring.
W-P shot an 50 percent from the floor (25-for-50) and had three players in double digits. Bartlow led the way with 18, Hamilton finished with 12 points and Cady chipped in 10. Bartlow made it a double-double with 10 rebounds.
At the other end of the floor, the W-P defense held the Patriots to 32 percent shooting on an 18-for-56 night. Corrigan, who went for 40 points in LC's previous outing, finished with only 13.
"We had a plan to always stay in front of (Corrigan) and have back side help," Hamilton said. "We mostly just tried to front him, so he wasn't able to get it down low, which we did pretty well. We worked hard at it and held him to a low amount of points."
W-P improved to 6-0 in league and 11-1 overall and took a No. 7 Class 2B state ranking into Dayton Saturday.
"It's that next door rivalry," Scott said of the Dayton match. "Dayton gives us a battle every time. We gotta be ready to go."
Waitsburg-Prescott 61, Liberty Christian 42
LIBERTY CHRISTIAN (42) - Koglin 2-3 0-0 5, Morris 2-5 0-0 4, Olson 1-3 0-0 2, Crawford 0-4 0-0 0, Siefken 6-22 3-5 16, Sitton 0-1 0-0 0, Lindquist 1-2 0-0 2, Corrigan 6-16 1-2 13. Totals 18-56 4-7 42.
WAITSBURG-PRESCOTT (61) - Estes 0-0 2-4 2, Hofer 3-6 0-0 7, Cady 4-8 2-6 10, Zuger 0-0 0-0 0, Hernandez 1-2 0-0 2, Bartlow 7-13 4-8 18, Brock 0-1 0-0 0, Wooderchak 3-8 0-0 7, Beasley 0-0 0-0 0, Brannock 1-3 0-0 3, Hamilton 6-9 0-0 12. Totals 25-50 8-18 61.
Liberty Christian 7 13 12 10 - 42
W-P 14 15 14 18 - 61
3-point goals - LC 2-11 (Koglin 1-2, Morris 0-2, Olson 0-1, Siefken 1-5, Corrigan 0-1), W-P 3-9 (Hofer 1-2, Bartlow 0-2, Wooderchak 1-4, Brannock 1-1). Total fouls - LC 17, W-P 12. Fouled out - none. Technical fouls - none. Rebounds - LC 33 (Corrigan 8), W-P 33 (Bartlow 10). Turnovers - LC 12, W-P 9. Assists - LC 6 (Siefken 2), W-P 9 (Cady 3).