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2:40 p.m. — I have just one complaint about the McPherson tourney — it needs better music during the warm-up. But if that’s the only complaint I have, life is good. This tourney makes me happy. Lots of good people to chat with, lots of smiles and good teams with good coaches. I can’t ask for anything more — except for better warm-up music!
The 3 p.m. game is Valley Center (3-8) vs. Andale (6-3).
Valley Center will be a good team next year. The Wedekind twins are good players, handle the ball well and they drive the lane successfully. There’s a lot of youth on this team.
As I wrote yesterday, Andale has lost three games and I’ve covered two of them. I swear, I’m not a jinx. Andale has a solid inside-out game, but struggled against the zone on Thursday.
4:30 p.m. — Hays (3-7) plays Buhler (5-5)
I was surprised at how badly Goddard made Buhler look on Thursday. Forcing 37 turnovers against a quality team is unexpected. I’d guess Buhler should take charge in this game, and we’d see a different team.
6 p.m. — The semifinals begin with Olathe South (10-0) vs. Beloit (6-4). I can’t imagine this game would be close, and really, that has nothing to do with Beloit and everything to do with Olathe South. I love the athletes on Olathe South — pure shooters, outstanding defensive players who are smart smart smart. There’s a reason why this program is good every season, despite a lack of depth. Amazing that it continues to win with six or seven players.
Natalie Knight is clearly the best player in the tournament. She’s heading to KU next year and was All-State as a junior. She’s amazing.
7:30 p.m . – McPherson (10-1) vs. Goddard (8-2)
Both teams are on winning streaks — McPherson has won 10 straight after opening the season with a loss to Salina South, while Goddard has won 7 straight. For Goddard to win this game, Kjia Hart must be a force offensively. She’s been suffering with the flu, and the Lions made up for her absence with a brilliant game by Shelby Zoglman (a triple-double in points, steals and rebounds). But McPherson is a lot better than Buhler is. Katelyn Loecker and Sarah Gaeddert will cause problems for the Lions in the lane. And Casyn Buchman is a stellar guard.
Should be a good day of games. Enjoy!