Headed for two

Ty Bowman drives aggressively to the hoop in the seventh-place game in the Ralph Miller Classic. The Blue Comets would go on to win over Goddard High School Saturday.

ROBERT MAGOBET

Not even a little foul trouble could stop Ty Bowman from helping his team secure a win over Goddard High School in Chanute High School’s last game in the 48th annual Ralph Miller Classic Saturday. The Blue Comets came away with a 51-45 win after leading for most of the game.

Bowman was taken out early in the second and late in the third quarters due to some foul trouble, but scored seven straight points when he went back on the court in the middle of the fourth. With Tye Coombs knocking down a 3, this extended a 38-30 lead in the fourth quarter. 

This spurt enabled the Blue Comets to pull away late in the game, eventually winning 51-45, which cemented a seventh-place spot in the tourney and a 5-6 record. Bowman muscled up 14 points, while Garrett Almond scored 11. Kam Koester registered 15 points, with nine of those points from free throws.

The Blue Comets drained four 3s thanks to Bowman, Coombs, Koester and Briley Peavy. Each of these players hit one 3 while helping Chanute shoot 30 percent from the field. As a unit, the blue-and-gold turned it over nine times. 

Despite Bowman being in foul trouble and replaced by Josh Slanksy for several minutes, the 6’5’’ big man said he knew he had to be aggressive when his number was called once more.

“I got in foul trouble, and I’ve had trouble with that all three (RMC) games, getting in foul trouble early, so I feel like I had to make up for the time lost that I was out and I had to try and play my best game to put our team in the best situation, if we were up or down, just do the best I could to get us going,” Bowman said after the game. 

While Bowman was in foul trouble, Goddard was in foul trouble early on, too. After Peavy hit a 3 to put Chanute up 13-10 at the end of the first quarter, the Blue Comets remained aggressive to give themselves a chance at the charity stripe – CHS made nine of 10 free throws in the quarter with Almond going six of six – and the end of the second quarter culminated with a Slanksy layup in traffic as he was fouled. Slanksy would go on to hit the free throw to put the score at 24-16 at the break.

But Goddard put up a valiant effort in the third. With Chanute only scoring four points in the third with Slansky’s and Koester’s baskets, Goddard went on a 10-4 run due to Blake Mitchell, a 6’3’’ All-Ark-Valley-Chisholm-Trail Honorable Mention player, scoring four in the quarter, including two free throws. Mitchell had six on the day, while Peyton Crawford scored 12 and Jackson LeFevre put up 11, helping Goddard shoot 50 percent from the field combined, with nine turnovers.

Chanute going cold combined with some ramped up Goddard defense were some factors in CHS’ lack of scoring in the third. But it was also because Bowman – a player who can use his strength in the post to overpower players, take a couple dribbles to score layups as well as hit an occasional 3 – was in foul trouble.

Head coach Devon Crabtree inserted Bowman back in the lineup in the middle of the fourth. Bowman used his height and burly frame to score in the high post. This was an aspect Goddard couldn’t stop.

“Well, we’re trying to get the ball in the high-post, and for some reason, we have trouble doing that in some games, get it in to him and let him attack off the bounce, and we thought that’s where our advantage was, and they had a good game plan to slow us down,” Crabtree said. “So our goal was to get it to the high-post, and let Ty attack off the bounce.”

A goal for Goddard, though, was to try and slow down the pace of the game, and to an extent, this strategy worked as Chanute was held to just 51 points on the win – the lowest scoring output of the year, but the second time this season the Blue Comets were able to win with 51 points. To combat this, CHS started out in a zone defense in the second half, which helped the Blue Comets outscore Goddard 23-19 in the fourth.

Chanute (5-6) will next play Iola (7-4) on Thursday at home.

“We’re going to see zone. We saw it earlier this year and we struggled with it in the beginning, and we knew they (Goddard) were going to play it, we haven’t seen anything else from them,” Crabtree said. “We just want to continue on our zone offense and how we are going to attack the zone and keep finding gaps and spots that we feel like we can have an advantage in.”

 

Three-point contest and All-Tournament Team

Garrett Almond won the Ralph Miller Classic three-point shooting contest early on Saturday morning. 

Almond, up against Goddard’s Jackson LeFevre and Shawnee Mission South’s Blake Potthoff, hit 17 3s in the first round, 12 3s in the second and 14 3s in the third round.

Almond, who won his first Ralph Miller Classic three-point contest, earned All-Tournament Team honors with players Xavier Bell (Andover), Ty Bowman (Chanute), Charles Snyder (Emporia), Cameron Moses (Goddard), Koi Jackson (Olathe North), Blake Potthoff (Shawnee Mission South), Andrew Brewer (Shawnee Mission South), Phil March (Soldan International Studies) and David Brown (Wichita).

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