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Late surge comes up 2 short in 41-39 loss PDF Print E-mail
Saturday, 16 December 2017 10:58

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Cameron Riley streaks to the basket on a fast break and is called for charging Friday night in Perryton. Riley scored 15 for the Redskins who as a team had an off-night shooting, and Liberal fell 41-39. L&T photo/Earl Watt

By EARL WATT

• Leader & Times

PERRYTON — Charges, missed shots, turnovers — nothing seemed to be going right for the Liberal Redskins in Perryton Friday night, and yet they still had a chance to win until Syris Dunlap’s desperation three-point shot at the buzzer sailed wide left, and Liberal lost another gritty gut-wrencher, 41-39.

The Redskins and Rangers couldn’t find many openings early with both missing several shots.

Cameron Riley hit ona  three in the first quarter, and Lee Hatcher was fouled ona  three-point attempt but only made one of three free throw shots, and Perryton was able tot ake a 9-7 lead.

Lee Hatcher found the basket form three in th second period, and Dunlap kicked in a basket and three free throws to go along with a pair of free throws form Riley while the Liberal defense clamped down on the Rangers, limiting Perryton to only six points in the period, and the Redskins had a 17-15 halftime lead.

Liberal jumped out to a 25-18 lead early in the second half, but the offense went ice cold, and Perryton started to chip away until they tied the game, 25-25.

But the Perryton run didn’t stop there.

The Rangers continued to score while the Redskins couldn’t penetrate the Perryton defense, and turnovers led to Ranger runouts until Liberal had given up a 17-0 run and trailed 35-25.

This tie, the Redskins went on a run, slashing into the 10-point Ranger lead with a pair of free throws by Lee Hatcher and a three by Riley.

A basket and another free throw form Dunlap cut the lead to 35-33, but the Redskins couldn’t close the gap, and with 2 seconds to play Perryton through a deep pass that was intercepted by Dunlap who fired up a half court three, but the shot missed, and Liberal fell 41-39.

Riley led Liberal with 15 points in the loss. Dunlap and Lee Hatcher each had eight.

“We made too many mistakes.” Liberal coach Ryan Petty said. “We came out and weren’t sharp, we had too many mental breakdowns early. We were very loose with the basketball, and I’ll take responsibility for that. We have to get better at it. This was a tough loss.”

Liberal’s defense was solid, but the transition game hurt the Redskins.

“Defense was great,” Petty said. “We executed how we wanted to. I couldn’t ask for any more. We struggled to guard the ball a little bit. They missed a lot of shots, we just couldn’t score the basketball. We didn’t run our sets correctly.”

The loss dropped Liberal to 2-3 heading in to the break.

“Defense is a little bit better than I thought we would be right now,” Petty said. “We struggle offensively. Any time any team puts any kind of pressure on us, we don’t handle that very well. We have to learn how to back cut correctly. We have to learn how to rip through. We put ourselves in a bad position.”

Liberal will host Perryton Jan. 2.

 

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The High Plains Daily Leader and Southwest Daily Times are published Sunday through Friday and reaches homes throughout the Liberal, Kansas retail trade zone. The Leader & Times is the official newspaper of Seward County, USD No. 480, USD No. 483 and the cities of Liberal and Kismet.  The Leader & Times is a member of the Liberal Chamber of Commerce, the Kansas Press Association and the Associated Press.

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