Ball hawk

Carter Coombs, a freshman, handles ball duties.


FORT SCOTT — The second night of back-to-back games is always a challenge. Basketball players in this short turnaround often come out flat and are not as detailed on fundamentals on offense and defense.

This unfortunately is what happened to Chanute on Friday night at Fort Scott — a night in which the Lady Comets would go down to Fort Scott by a score of 49-46.

Senior guard Kori Babcock had 16 points, coupled with nine assists and four steals. Senior guard Brianna Waggoner notched 11 points and four rebounds, while senior forward Mattilyn Cranor, sophomore guard Tyra Bogle and freshman forward Kierny Follmer all had five points each, with Cranor grabbing four rebounds. 

Stats aside, the game came down to the last play.

After a timeout called by Lady Comets coach Dustin Fox, with the game at 49-46, Babcock took a pass from the sideline before dribbling to the top of the three-point line, attempting a step-back move. The All-State senior guard’s shot was blocked by Fort Scott All-SEK guard Ella Beth, which ended the game at 49-46 as the horn sounded.

The play was set up by a Bogle layup out of a timeout, and Waggoner draining a corner 3 off of Babcock penetration. Beth missed free throw with roughly 10 seconds to go in the game. 

While the Beth missed free throw ensured the door staying open with a 49-46 score in the waning seconds of the ballgame, the energy level all game just wasn’t there on a second night of a back-to-back. 

The third quarter highlighted that. 

“We were flat for long stretches, especially to start the third quarter,” Fox said. “That put us in a hole we were never able to fully climb out of.”

By the end of the third quarter, Chanute was down 37-29. Two 3s by Fort Scott junior Abby Altic helped the lead for the SEK foe. Fort Scott junior Harmony Shaw added in a 3 in the quarter as well. 

Still, Chanute’s game plan was simple: pressure and create turnovers. But Chanute didn’t have much success with that, unfortunately. The Blue-and-Gold seemed to be a step slow all night and Fort Scott capitalized. 

Comparing Fort Scott’s game plan in the Freeman Sports Medicine Mid-Season Shoot Out in January to Friday’s game, Fort Scott didn’t do much differently, but execute more than before.

“We might have been tired from the back-to-back, but we have to find a way to be mentally tough enough to bring it anyway,” Fox said. “We weren’t tonight, but I think there are lessons to be learned and we can be better as a result.”

Seventh-year Fort Scott head coach Pechone Stepps echoed some of the same sentiments. 

“I thought one of the biggest things for us that happened was we made some shots, which always help,” Stepps said. “We kept them off the foul line and I thought it was just a good team effort. You hate to play Chanute three times from that perspective, but I thought our girls banded together.”

Fort Scott used a 2-3 zone to keep Babcock in front, while also doing their best to limit Cranor in the post.

Offensively, their post players played well, but it was Altic who had the hot hand with 14 points on four 3s. 

Chanute is now 4-3 in the SEK. But CHS (11-4) will get another crack at No. 7 Labette County, a team they lost to Thursday, Tuesday, 6 pm at home. 


Blue Comets: 10 11  8  12 

Tigers:           12 13 17 16

Kam Koester 17, Garrett Almond 15, Carter Coombs 8, Aaron Robertson 7, Shan Williams 4


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