The Boone Central Cardinals’ court fortunes completely flipped this past weekend.
After a dominant sweep to the Alliance Holiday Tournament championship ran the Cards’ win streak to five games, Boone Central came out on the short end of two tough decisions Jan. 6-7.
Boone Central hosted O’Neill (5-3) Friday, with the Eagles pulling away to a 63-56 victory in the final quarter of play. It was a case of not enough shots falling, and too much Landon Classen.
Classen scored inside, outside and seemingly everywhere, leading O’Neill’s win with a 36 point performance. On the other end, Boone converted just 38% of its 2-point field goal attempts, 30% of 3-point tries, and only 5-of-12 free throws.
The Cardinals had a strong start, taking a 21-14 first quarter lead as Ryan Drueppel sank two 3-pointers and Alex Christo one. O’Neill closed the gap to 34-31 by halftime, stayed close in the third period, then finished with a 17-7 run in the final stanza – 15 of those points courtesy of Classen, who hit 5-of-8 3-point attempts overall.
It wasn’t so much opponent points that defeated Boone Central Saturday, but rather lack of Cardinal scoring.
In a hard-nosed Mid-State Conference defensive battle, host Wayne (10-3) rallied from an early deficit to defeat Boone 37-33.
The Cards again began the contest in good fashion, taking a 10-6 lead through the opening period. Wayne held Boone to just three points in the second quarter, however, knotting the score at intermission, then had just enough production in the second half to prevail.
The actual key for the Blue Devils was limiting Boone Central (6-4) production. The Cardinals again struggled shooting, converting 10-of-25 2-point shots, 2-of-12 3-point tries and 9-of-15 free throws.
“We did a good job of pushing the ball in the first quarter. After that, shot attempts were at a premium and we were not efficient,” Harris said. “Trent had a good game sealing and finishing. Brant sparked us with his defensive play.”
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