SALINA — Dylan Hawkins' arms slumped to his sides after the referee blew the whistle late in the fourth quarter. He knew he'd picked up his fifth foul in the final game of his Andale career.
Down by 12 points, the game was decided before Hawkins picked up the foul with 1:02 left in Andale's 56-42 loss to top-seeded Holton in the Class 4A quarterfinals on Wednesday.
"It's sad, but at the same time you understand that only one team comes out of this a real winner in the end," Hawkins said. "We just wanted to keep going and play hard. We tried giving it all we got. We had the mentality that this game wasn't over until the clock read zero. I'm going to miss it."
Up by two points, Holton gained some breathing room with a 5-0 run midway through the second quarter.
Andale's Bret Archer fired back with seven of his nine points to lead a 9-2 run with 1:30 left in the first half.
With a few seconds left in the second quarter, Holton heaved up a miracle three-pointer. It didn't go in, but Ty Burdiek was under the basket to tip in the rebound to give the Wildcats a 25-20 halftime lead.
"That was a little disappointing because I thought we did a really good job up until that point," Andale coach Jeff Buchanan said. "There might have been one or two things here and there, but nothing big."
Holton scored two quick baskets in the third quarter by Forrestal Hickman and Trent Tanking.
"We came out and showed them a different look off of our press in the second half and forced a turnover for two quick buckets," Holton coach Ryan West said. "In a game like that, a nine-point lead is pretty big when it was so hard to score."
Holton's lead hovered around 10 points for most of the second half. Hawkins put in six of his team-high 12 points in the fourth quarter, but Andale couldn't cut down the deficit.
"We were trying to get it out of (Tanking's) hands as much as we could, and try to make some of their guys that aren't comfortable late in the game make a play with the ball," Buchanan said. "We were able to do that, but we just gave up one or two layups that kept them with a comfortable lead."
Up by 11 points with 1:54 left, Holton hit 7 of 8 free throws.
KC Sumner 67, Buhler 49 — Sumner's size and strength were too much for Buhler in the Sabres' 67-49 win.
Buhler gained its only lead with two baskets in the opening minutes. Sumner countered with a 9-0 run and never looked back.
"They are one of the best teams we've faced this year. They have a lot of components that make it very difficult for any opponent," Buhler coach Dennis Wahlgreen said. "With their size, their quickness and their strength, you're looking at three things that are tough to contend with."
Out-sized in the paint, Buhler had a difficult time keeping it out of the hands of Sumner post players Elijah Alexander and Vernon Vaughn, who combined for 29 points.
"The last month and a half or so, we've made a real effort to try and get the ball inside," Sumner coach Daniel Parra said. "We have three guys we think can post up and create a mismatch somewhere."
With most of the offensive production coming from the paint, Sumner shot 71.8 percent.
Brandon Givens led Buhler with 15 points. JP Lohrentz chipped in 11 points and Trevor Torgerson and Drew Pankratz had 10 points each.
Ottawa 65, Smoky Valley 47 — Ottawa outscored Smoky Valley 22-9 in the third quarter to pull away.
Semi Ojeleye led Ottawa with a game-high 33 points and five rebounds. Wayd Thomas finished with 18 points and six rebounds for Smoky Valley.