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Skyline boys win 2A sub-state title

Hannah Brown
Skyline boys basketball team members celebrate the hard-fought championship trophy after defeating Syracuse in 2A Sub-State finals Saturday in Elkart.

The Skyline High School boys basketball team defeated Sublette, Spearville and Syracuse on their way to a 2A Sub-State Tournament championship last week, starting with a game against Sublette on Tuesday, March 3.

The T-birds put up 20 points in the first quarter compared to 13 by the Larks. Unfortunately for the Larks, that would equal the number of points they would score for the rest of the game. The defense of the Thunderbirds really put the clamps down on the Larks for the remaining three quarters, allowing just 13 points in 24 minutes of play. In that time, Skyline scored 50 points, cruising to a 70-26 victory.

“It was great to be able to host one more game in the Thunderdome. The seniors went out playing great defense. We rebounded the ball well this game too. We were able to create turnovers and our offense was pushing the ball up the court,” said Coach Eddy.

Steve Fisher led the team with 17 points followed by Ryan Adams with 13 points. Aden Temanson scored 10 points and grabbed seven rebounds and Eliazer Carrasco scored nine points and had seven rebounds.

On Friday, March 6 the Thunderbirds made the trek to Elkhart to take on Spearville High School. The T-birds came one game closer to the state tournament with a 54-38 win over the Lancers.

“Again everything was started by our defense. We played with great pace and were able to disrupt their ball handlers. Eliazar had a good game inside. He was extremely efficient from the field (8-11) and this would be his first of two consecutive double-doubles. The guards were unselfish the whole night and continually looked for the open guy. We probably left 20 points out there though because of missed lay-ups,” said head coach Kenny Eddy.

Eliazar Carrasco had a double-double with 16 points and 10 rebounds. Steve Fisher chipped in 12 points. Sam Fiser (10 points, six rebounds, four assists, and four steals) and Mark Schmidt (eight points, four assists, four steals) both had well-rounded games for the Thunderbirds.

On Saturday, the Thunderbirds took on Syracuse High School in the Sub-State championship game. In unfamiliar fashion, the T-birds were outscored in the first quarter by five points, going down 7-12 to the Bulldogs. Skyline was able to erase most of that deficit in the second quarter, but it was a close game at the half with the score Syracuse 21, Skyline 19.

Coach Kenny Eddy’s squad came out of the break and applied defensive pressure once again, allowing just two points to be scored by the Bulldogs, while adding 12 points to their total. Heading into the final quarter of play, the TBirds had eradicated the early deficit and led 32 to 23. Syracuse had a fierce comeback effort in the fourth quarter, but the T-birds’ big third quarter was too much to overcome. The T-birds punched their ticket to the state championship with a 45-40 victory.

“This was a low scoring game because of great defense on both ends. Syracuse is a long team with everyone being over 6 feet tall besides Kyler Keller who is still 5'11. We struggled to rebound at times throughout the game until Eliazar took over. Our guards started to get the ball into the paint a little more and that opened up our offense. We had a nine-point lead with about seven minutes to go. Syracuse started to go on a run, though. They hit four threes in the fourth quarter to get it down to one. Then we were able to ice the game away at the free-throw line. It was a great environment to be in,” said coach Eddy.

Carrasco had another double-double with 16 points and 14 rebounds. Steve Fisher chipped in 13 points.

Skyline goes into sate as the number one seed with a record of 21-1. They will take on the #8 seed, Hillsboro, on Thursday, March 12 at Kansas State University’s Bramlage Coliseum. Tip-off is slated for 3 p.m.

“Overall, the guys are incredibly excited to be in the position that we are. This has been our goal since day one. Now that we're here, we just have to see what we can do with it. We're going in as the one seed, but we are far from the favorites. I'm not sure anyone even expects us to win our first-round game. Hillsboro is a great team that plays in a 3A league. They have played a ton of competition this year so their record is deceiving. We'll have to play well to advance to the weekend, but the boys are fully capable of going on a run,” said coach Eddy.