Good Luck

February 24th, 2020

hunterdriveHunter Hatcher dribbles by a Salina Central defender Friday in Salina. The Redskins dropped to 0-2 at the tournament with a 74-61 loss. L&T photo/Earl WattBy EARL WATT

Leader & Times

SALINA — The Salina Invitational Tournament has not been kind for the Liberal Redskins.

Even during a state appearance season three years ago, Liberal lost a first-round game in Salina, and after a 75-55 loss to Abilene Thursday, the Redskins gave up a 14-0 run to Salina Central in the home gym of the Mustangs in the consolation semifinal and fell 74-61.

Both teams used the deep ball throughout the game Friday. Liberal knocked down eight three-point shots, but Salina Central connected on nine, and when the Mustangs missed, they were able to get offensive rebounds and second chance shots that allowed them to pull out to a double digit lead on the Redskins in the second quarter.

After limiting turnovers most of the season, the Liberal Redskins struggled to take care of the ball against the Mustangs, and turnovers turned into transition baskets.

After trailing by 14 in the first half, the Redskins cut the lead to six early in the third quarter, but that’s when Salina Central put together a 14-0 run tot ake a 20-point lead and force the Redskins to chase the rest of the way.

Liberal cut the lead to 13 but could get no closer in the74-61 loss.

Hunter Hatcher, Lee Hatcher and AJ Ramirez each had 14 points in the loss.

“Salina Central made 17 of 18 two-point shots,” Liberal coach Ryan Petty said. “Most were uncontested lay-ups. We tried to trap in the half court and we just couldn’t guard the ball. We tried zone, but we couldn’t get a rebound.”

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