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Louisburg’s rally falls short in sub-state loss to Spring Hill

Andy Brown / Louisburg Sports Zone

Louisburg senior Desmond Doles goes up for a shot fake during the Wildcats’ Class 4A sub-state semifinal game against Spring Hill on Friday in Paola. The Wildcats saw their season come to an end with a 41-33 loss to the Broncos.


PAOLA – The Louisburg boys basketball team made one final rally at Spring Hill during the Class 4A sub-state semifinals.

Unfortunately for the Wildcats, they just ran out of time.

The Wildcats found themselves down double digits early in the fourth quarter, and it appeared that their season was over, but they battled back to cut the Spring Hill lead to four. It was as close as Louisburg could get in its 41-33 loss Friday in Paola that brought it season to a close.

Spring Hill would go on to defeat Paola in the sub-state championship game and will compete in the state tournament starting tomorrow.

Louisburg (2-19) suffered two close losses to Spring Hill, and another to Paola, in recent weeks and Wildcat coach Ty Pfannenstiel believes his team was putting it together at the right time.

“We were playing as well as anyone at the end of the year,” he said. “Paola was as hot as anyone at the time we played them and we played them close and almost won. Spring Hill has been very good all year. Record-wise, everyone kind of beat up on each other in the league and got a win here or there, but we weren’t able to do that this year, but I don’t think anyone was really comfortable in playing us at the end of the year. Coach Book from Spring Hill wasn’t real excited to play us because he knew we had so much room for growth and improvement.”

The Wildcats turned up the pressure offensively and made it a close game in the fourth quarter. At one point, Louisburg trailed 31-21 early in the fourth quarter, but the Wildcats went on a 7-1 run thanks to baskets from seniors Dalton Ribordy and Ben Minster and a 3-pointer from junior Kohl Vogel.

Senior Dalton Ribordy puts up a shot in the lane Friday against Spring Hill.

That run cut the Spring Hill advantage to 34-30 with 1 minute and 50 seconds left in the contest, but the Broncos knocked down their free throws to secure the eight-point win.

“We went through our normal third quarter issue that we normally have, and lost our energy there for a bit,” Pfannenstiel said. “We were able to hit some shots and get back in it. We just ran out of time and weren’t able to make enough plays. We just started too late and we needed to have that spark in the third quarter. Once that happened, our energy on the defensive end was better.”

Defense was able to keep Louisburg in the game as the Wildcats held Spring Hill to just 37 percent from the field and forced 19 turnovers. Louisburg also recorded 13 steals and 15 points off Bronco turnovers.

Louisburg just wasn’t able to stay with Spring Hill on the glass as the bigger Bronco squad outrebounded the Wildcats 32-19, including 12 offensive boards.

Junior Brayden Gage drives to the basket on a Spring Hill defender Friday in Paola.

“Our kids have been really good defensively all year, minus the Baldwin game earlier in the year,” Pfannenstiel said. “We knew that is what will keep us in games, and the effort there. That is tough to do when we struggle to score the way we do and try to find that energy on the defensive end. Our kids played tough with starting out in a zone and then switching it up and going man. We were effective in both of those.

“We just talked that we were going to have to play with high energy and make plays. We just didn’t put the ball in the basket enough times. You can’t fault our effort though and that is what we ask for out of our kids, which is to play hard all the time.”

Minster led Louisburg in scoring with eight points, while senior Desmond Doles added seven points to go along with a team-high five rebounds and four steals. Ribordy added five points and five rebounds and Vogel also finished with five points.

“I was really proud of the way we played toward the end of the season,” Pfannenstiel said. “I would have liked to hit that level earlier in the year, but you want to play your best basketball at the end of the year and I think we can sit back and say that.”


LOU               7             7             7             12 – 33

SH                  9             9             10           13 – 41

LOUISBURG (2-19): Ben Minster 8, Desmond Doles 7, Kohl Vogel 5, Dalton Ribordy 5, Brayden Gage 3, Dylan DeShazer 2, Justin Sievert 2, Madden Rutherford 1. Totals: 12-34 6-13 33. 3-point field goals: 3, (Vogel, Doles, Ribordy)

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