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Longhorns open with wins over Cozad, McCook PDF Print E-mail

By Russ Pankonin
The Imperial Republican

Just like last year, the Chase County Longhorns opened their season with a two-game sweep with wins over Cozad and McCook.
The Longhorns controlled the Cozad Haymakers en route to a 58-45 win here Friday night.
On Saturday, they handed McCook a 52-40 loss on the Bison’s home court.
Coach Carl Zuege said it’s been a long time since the Longhorns have been able to pick up a win on McCook’s home floor. “It was nice to get that one,” Zuege said.
Of the two games, Zuege felt the Longhorns’ most complete game came against Cozad. “We played really well,” he said.
He said they’ve worked hard over the summer and in preseason to step up their transition game.
He said that improvement was evident Friday. Getting stops on defense lead to baskets in transition.
At McCook he felt the Longhorns defended the Bison well but left some points out on the floor.
He said their goal is to score 60 points per game. “At that level we’ll be in most games with a chance to win,” he said.
Sidney, Ogallala this week
Zuege said Sidney could be one of the toughest teams the Longhorns face this season. They’ll likely be one of the tallest, too.
They have a 6-7 post and two other starters at 6-4.
They come in with a 2-1 mark with wins over Greeley (Colo.) West and Chadron while falling to Scottsbluff.
Zuege said the defense will need to limit them to one shot and shut down their offensive rebounding to get the Longhorns’ transition game going.
On Saturday, the Longhorns travel to Ogallala to face the 0-2 Indians.
They lost their opener to Lexington by one and fell to Minden by 18.
Cozad
The Longhorns led 8-7 at the 3:40 mark in the first quarter before Travis Luhrs gave his team some breathing room, knocking down back-to-back 3-pointers to open up a 14-7 lead.
Jeff Dickey got a 3-point play the hard way to open the second quarter.
Cozad put together a run, cutting the Longhorns’ lead to one, 17-16, at the 5:30 mark and pulled ahead 20-21 on a trey with 4:08 left in the half.
Dickey went on a run of his own, dropping three deuces and a trey.  A free throw by Issac Sorensen near the end of the half gave the Longhorns a 30-25 lead at the break.
The third quarter proved big for the Longhorns, as the transition game kicked into the gear.
The Longhorns held Cozad to just seven while putting 17 on the board to build a comfortable 47-32 lead going into the fourth quarter.
Cozad could only cut the lead to 13 in the final quarter, giving the Longhorns their first win of the season, 58-45.
The Longhorns finished in double figures with Dickey leading the way with 18, followed by Sorensen with 16 and Luhrs with 13.
The Longhorns finished at 45 percent from the floor, going 4-12 outside the 3-point arc and 21-44 inside the arc.
The Longhorns limited Cozad to just 37 attempts for 38 percent.
Dickey led the rebounding with six, followed by Kelton Fisher with five and Sorensen and Luhrs with four each.
McCook
The Longhorns gave up just one free throw to McCook midway in the first quarter en route to a 11-1 lead after the first quarter that included threes from Luhrs and Ryan Moline.
In the second quarter, the Longhorns opened the margin up by five more at half with a deuce and trey from Luhrs, three baskets by Fisher and two more by Sorensen. Going into halftime, the Longhorns held a 26-11 advantage.    
The third quarter proved big again Saturday night, with the Longhorns putting up 17 points to add three more to their margin going into the fourth up 43-25.
The treys kept falling for the Longhorns in the third with Moline hitting two with Luhrs adding a third.
Moline’s night would come to an end early in the fourth quarter.
He and a McCook player were battling for a rebound and both had control of the ball. Moline got the short end when the McCook player threw him to the floor.
Zuege said that as of Tuesday, Moline remains questionable for this week’s games.
The Longhorns gave up some of the lead late in the fourth but had the game well in hand, winning by 12, 52-40.
Luhrs led the scoring for the Longhorns with 18, including four 3-pointers. Fisher finished in double figures with 12.
As a team, the Longhorns hit 45 percent of 47 shots, including 7-20 outside the arc.  
Dickey led the rebounding with five.
Game times this weekend
Friday’s game here against Sidney and Saturday’s game at Ogallala, both begin with girls and boys jayvee games at 4:30 p.m. MT.

Imperial 58
2 PT.    3 PT.    FT/
FG    FG    FTA    F    TP
Travis Luhrs    3    2    1-1    1    13
Ryan Moline    1    1    0-0    4    5
Ike Maxwell    0    0    0-0    0    0
Tyler Jennings    0    0    0-0    0    0
Jose Cepeda    0    0    0-0    3    0
Destyn Milner    0    0    0-0    3    0    
Dakota Wallin    0    0    0-0    0    0
Jeffrey Dickey    7    1    1-1    4    18
Kelton Fisher    2    0    0-0    3    4
Isaac Sorensen    7    0    2-4    2    16
Eli Engbrecht    0    0    0-0    0    0
Michael Musgrove    0    0    0-0    0    0
Jared Sharp    1    0    0-2    1    2
Darin Knobbe    0    0    0-0    1    0
Kevin Chavira    0    0    0-0    0    0
TOTALS    21    4    4-8    22    58
Cozad 45
C. Wetovic 15, A. Sayer 4, C. Dugan 2, C. Young 7, J. Finnegan 12, M. Wolfe 2, M. Fischer 3.
Cozad totals: 2 pt. FG—10; 3 pt. FG—4; FT/FTA—13-21; Fouls—11; TP—45.
Points by quarters:
Imperial    14    16    17    11—58
Cozad    9    16    7    13—45
Imperial 52
2 PT.    3 PT.    FT/
FG    FG    FTA    F    TP
Travis Luhrs    3    4    0-1    1    18
Ryan Moline    0    3    0-0    1    9
Ike Maxwell    0    0    0-0    0    0
Tyler Jennings    0    0    0-0    0    0
Jose Cepeda    0    0    0-0    1    0
Destyn Milner    0    0    0-0    0    0    
Dakota Wallin    0    0    0-0    1    0
Jeffrey Dickey    1    0    2-5    1    4
Kelton Fisher    6    0    0-2    2    12
Isaac Sorensen    4    0    0-4    2    8
Eli Engbrecht    0    0    0-0    0    0
Michael Musgrove    0    0    0-0    0    0
Jared Sharp    0    0    0-0    1    0
Darin Knobbe    0    0    0-0    1    0
Kevin Chavira    0    0    1-2    0    1
TOTALS    14    7    3-14    11    52
McCook 40
D. Williams 2, P. Stagemeyer 11, C. Sheets 10, B. Lyons 2, G. Gaston 5, T. Wallen 8, L.Curl 4.
McCook totals: 2 pt. FG—16; 3 pt. FG—2; FT/FTA—2-7; Fouls—14; TP—40.
Points by quarters:
Imperial    11    15    17    9—52
McCook    1    10    14    15—40