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TMP boys outmatched by Larned

By AUSTIN COLBERT

acolbert@dailynews.net

LARNED -- Thomas More Prep-Marian boys' basketball coach Joe Hertel didn't beat around the bush when describing the Monarchs' game at Larned on Tuesday night.

"That was a good, old-fashioned butt-kicking," Hertel said. "We got beat at every position quickness wise, speed wise and strength wise. If you throw in with that a significant number of their players can shoot it well outside the line, it really puts us in a real predicament trying to defend."

TMP (3-4) had no answer for Larned, ranked No. 10 in Class 4A Division II, and fell 78-61.

Larned raced out to a 10-2 lead and led 18-8 after the first quarter. The Monarchs finally found some offense in the second quarter but the defense saw no improvement, allowing Larned to take a 36-23 lead into the locker room.

"We kind of jumped on them early and I know he's got a young group," Larned coach Don Zimmerman said. "Even in the second half when we gave up some buckets and they cut it down to 10, maybe even nine or eight once or twice, to be honest I never really felt like we were in any great danger."

Larned built a 50-33 lead midway through the third quarter when TMP made its only serious rally of the game. Three 3-pointers by Kameron Schmidt in the third quarter helped turn the 17-point deficit into an eight-point game at 50-42 and again at 52-44.

But that is as close as the Monarchs would get.

"The biggest thing was we started to make some mistakes that we can't afford to make," Zimmerman said. "As soon as we rectified some of that in the fourth quarter, quit turning the basketball over and quit giving up offensive rebounds, and all of a sudden it looks like we can play again."

Larned built its lead back to 68-46 in the fourth quarter before TMP finally waved the white flag, calling a timeout with 3:48 to play to put in its reserves.

Despite giving up a season worst 78 points, Hertel was more disappointed in the Monarchs' offense than anything. Hertel wanted TMP to push the ball and play aggressive after falling down early, something the players didn't execute nearly as well as Hertel would have wished.

"I guess there are a couple of different interpretations about play faster. We played out of control from that point on and didn't play within ourselves," Hertel said. "I felt we played offense very chaotic, and to be very honest, semi out of control. And that's on me. I assure you that will be corrected before the next game."

Schmidt led TMP with 12 points, going 4 of 9 from 3-point range. Max Megaffin and Jared Vitztum each added 10 points for the Monarchs.

Larned was led by Brayden Smith's 17 points, with Easton Palmer adding 15.

Larned 44, TMP 40 (OT)

Just when it looked like the Thomas More Prep-Marian girls' basketball team was going to pull off the miracle comeback on Tuesday night, Larned's Shaylene Shepherd hit a second chance, rainbow 3-pointer off the backboard with 10 seconds to play in regulation to tie the game and send it to overtime.

"I thought when we got ahead right at the end there we just needed to get that rebound, secure it and not give them the chance. Then the girl shot and made it," TMP coach Rose McFarland said. "They out-rebounded us and that killed us. I just don't think our intensity was there tonight."

TMP (2-5) was held without a point in the overtime period and ended up losing 44-40. It was the Monarchs' third overtime game of the season and second in as many games.

If there is any consolation for TMP, the fact they got the game to overtime at all showed how much fight the young Monarchs have.

Larned opened the fourth quarter with a 3-pointer by Tiara Diaz, extending the Indians' lead to 37-25. Larned wouldn't score again until Shepherd's 3 with 10 seconds to play.

TMP went on a 15-0 run in the fourth quarter, scoring more points than it had at halftime when it trailed 17-13. Katelyn Zimmerman was the catalyst for the offensive boost, scoring six of her 10 points early in the period.

The Monarchs took their first lead at 38-37 with 1:05 to play after a pair of free throws by Jodi Veach, her only points of the game. Megan Koenigsman added two more free throws to extend the lead to 40-37 with 26.3 seconds to play before Shepherd's 3-pointer sent the game to overtime.

"I'm happy we fought back but we've got to learn how to finish a game," McFarland said. "I'm not going to use youth as an excuse because the girls have played a lot of games. I just think overall we didn't have the intensity."

Shepherd got a bucket early in overtime, the only field goal for either team in the extra period. Zimmerman had a chance to tie the game with 32.6 seconds to play but missed a pair of free throws, and Allyson Aldrich iced it with her own free throws for Larned with 13.8 seconds remaining.

Shepherd led all players with 14 points. Koenigsman's 11 points led TMP.

As a team, TMP was 2 of 26 from 3-point range, going 0-11 in the first half.

"We had plenty of opportunities. We didn't shoot the ball well tonight at all," McFarland said. "When you are off offensively you should still be able to pick it up defensively. We had easy shot opportunities and didn't score. Our shots didn't fall. We are going to have nights like that, but you still got to play defense and rebound."

TMP next travels to Abilene on Tuesday for a 6 p.m. start.

Larned 78, TMP 61

TMP (3-4)

Kameron Schmidt 4-11 0-0 12, Max Megaffin 4-10 2-4 10, Jared Vitztum 3-3 3-4 10, Fouts 2-4 3-5 7, Schumacher 3-3 0-0 6, Hoffman 2-3 0-1 4, Mayorga 1-4 2-4 4, Schippers 2-3 0-0 4, Gottschalk 1-4 0-1 2, Dreher 1-2 0-0 2, Schibi 0-0 0-0 0, Rudder 0-0 0-0 0

Larned

Brayden Smith 5-10 6-8 17, Easton Palmer 7-15 0-0 15, Unruh 3-6 0-0 8, Reece 3-3 2-6 8, Stelter 3-5 1-2 8, Meyer 2-3 2-4 6, Bryant 2-4 2-2 6, Perez 2-3 2-2 6, Zimmerman 0-0 2-2 2, Skelton 1-5 0-0 2

TMP 8 15 21 17 -- 61

Larned 18 18 20 22 -- 78

3-point goals -- TMP 5-14 (Schmidt 4), Larned 5-15 (Unruh 2). Free throws -- TMP 10-19, Larned 17-26. Total fouls -- TMP 24, Larned 17. Fouled out -- none.

Larned 44, TMP 40 (OT)

TMP

Megan Koenigsman 3-14 4-5 11, Katelyn Zimmerman 5-7 0-3 10, Wellbrock 1-4 4-5 6, Pfeifer 1-13 2-2 5, Koerner 0-5 2-2 2, Gottschalk 1-3 0-0 2, Younie 1-4 0-0 2, Veach 1-4 0-0 2, DeWitt 0-1 0-2 0, Applequist 0-1 0-0 0

Larned

Shaylene Shepherd 5-13 3-5 14, Diaz 3-12 0-0 9, Aldrich 2-6 3-3 7, Johnson 2-9 2-2 6, Byrum 3-5 0-0 6, Perez 1-8 0-0 2, Langdon 0-3 0-1 0, Hoffman 0-0 0-0 0, Bright 0-0 0-0 0, Robison 0-0 0-0 0

TMP 4 9 12 15 0 -- 40

Larned 13 4 17 6 4 -- 44

3-point goals -- TMP 2-26 (Koenigsman 1, Pfeifer 1), Larned 4-14 (Diaz 3). Free throws -- TMP 12-19, Larned 8-11. Total fouls -- TMP 15, Larned 21. Fouled out -- TMP, none; Larned, Perez, Johnson.