The Grain Valley boys basketball team used a strong defense and strong passing to overcome a slow start and claim the first Suburban Conference victory in program history.
The Eagles tallied 14 steals and dished out 15 assist on 20 field goals in a 52-34 Suburban Small Seven win over host Platte County Friday night.
“We were as tough as we’ve been all year,” Grain Valley coach Andy Herbert said. “We struggled to start the game, but hung together and fought through it. I was extremely proud of our entire team. We took a big step tonight in building the habits it’s going to take for us to be successful.”
Caden Matlon did a bit of everything to help the Eagles improve to 4-3 overall and 1-2 in the Small Seven. He had a team-high 17 points and added four assists, four steals, three rebounds and two blocks.
Kevin Gutierrez added 11 points, five rebounds, four steals and three assists, Jesse Scholtz had nine points and three steals and Josh Kilpatrick chipped in seven points, six rebounds and six assists.
Tied 20-20 at halftime, the Eagles outscored the Pirates 14-6 in the third quarter to take control and pulled away with an 18-6 advantage in the final period.
OAK GROVE 92, MARSHALL 71: Oak Grove is off to a fast start – especially offensively – and it continued Friday.
The Panthers, who are averaging more than 82 points a game in a 5-1 start, tallied their highest point total of the season for a non-conference road win at Marshall.
The Panthers outscored the Owls 23-12 in the second quarter to erase a 14-12 deficit and never looked back, leading by as much as 40 at one point.
“We had a big second quarter,” Oak Grove coach Ty Hames said. “The big difference was our team rebounding, which allowed use to push the ball up court. The offense was also fueled by some turnovers.”
Tully Thomsen fired in 31 points on five 3-pointers and post player Trey Bryant poured in 26 to lead the Panthers, who have won five straight after a season-opening loss to Kirkwood. Ely Wycoff added 11 points and Brenden Marsh and Gavin Richardson each had nine to offset 31 by Marshall’s Jace Lance.
PARK HILL 70, FORT OSAGE 62: Fort Osage struggled at the free throw line to suffer its first loss of the season.
The Indians (4-1) made just 15 of 33 free throws, including 10 misses in the first half, in a non-conference loss at Park Hill Friday.
“We did a nice job of attacking and getting to the free throw line, but we couldn’t hit them,” Indians coach Josh Wilson said. “We missed some front ends of one-and-ones so we missed even more opportunities. We had three turnovers in a row and they got out in front in the second. And we missed several point-blank layups. It was one of those nights.”
The Indians led 16-12 after one quarter but the Trojans outscored them 24-13 in the second quarter to grab a 36-29 lead.
Xavier Kahube scored 18 points and Miles Dunfield added 12 to lead Fort Osage.