STATE BASKETBALL: Round 1, Thursday, March 8; No. 7 Lourdes vs. No. 2 Paxton at 9 a.m. at Lincoln Northeast, 2635 N 63rd St, Lincoln, NE 68507. Round 2, Friday, March 9; vs. winner of J-B and West Holt, at Bob Devaney Sports Center, 1600 Court St, Lincoln, NE 68508.
Brandon Fredrichs and Quinten Vasa totaled 36 points in the district finals against the Walthill Blue Jays on Tuesday, Feb. 27, at Elkhorn South High School as the Knights won 65-55 and, with that win, are on their way to state for a third year in a row.
With seconds remaining in the first half and the Knights leading 30-26, Lourdes forced a turnover and Ben Miller found Thomas Ragland on a pass connection that was followed by a lay up and a foul. Ragland made his free throw for the three point play and the Knights’ lead rose to 33-26 heading into the locker room.
Ragland, who made three third quarter threes, started the second half with a corner three to give the Knights a double digit lead.
Walthill had the deficit down to single digits until Vasa made a jump shot to increase the Knights lead to 58-47.
The Knights were able to hit free throws down the stretch and win 65-55 and pick up win number 18 for the year.
Brandon Fredrichs dominated the paint and finished the game with 21 points.
Head Coach Joe Tynon said his team was able to read the defense and move the ball inside out.
Early in the season the Knights got off to a slow start but finished strong by winning eight of their last ten games.
“Earlier on in the season we were settling for early threes and not getting the ball inside out.
“Now we got ourselves where we are a little bit more patient with the ball going inside out, getting the ball in the paint off dribble penetration, post up touch, anything that we can to get the ball inside,” Tynon said.
“Our shooters are good enough to move and rotate to the right spot and we can get good inside out threes.”
Tynon said, in the month of December, his team had five losses which was something the players were not accustomed to, but since then, the Knights have lost only three games.
Lourdes fought through some adversity this season. In the Pioneer Conference Tournament, Colter Fulton broke his leg and a couple weeks ago at practice, Neilas Tamosiunas tore his ACL.
“It’s an a tribute to those guys about how resilient those guys are and to battle through this and to get ourselves back into Lincoln,” Tynon said.
Walthill--Kaden, 14; Porter, 12; Benjamin, 9.
Knights--Fredrichs, 21; Vasa, 16; Ragland, 15; Baumert, 5; Miller, 4; Funke, 4.