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Louisburg 46, Paola 33

PAOLA – The Louisburg boys basketball team needed a win in the worst way as the Wildcats had dropped five of their last six games heading into Tuesday’s contest with Paola.

If the Wildcats were to get back on the right track, they were going to have to get a win on their rival’s home floor.

Louisburg was more than up for the task. The Wildcat defense held Paola to just 11 second half points and got its second win of 2019 with a 46-33 victory over the Panthers.

“It was exactly what we needed,” Louisburg coach Ty Pfannenstiel said. “Obviously both sides are going to get up for this game and it is always very emotional and high energy. It was a defensive struggle and both teams played really tough defense and to hold them to 33 is important for us. It is nice to get us off that losing streak where we were one for our last six. Hopefully we can build off this.”

Defensively, the Wildcats were the aggressor as they forced 28 turnovers – many of those coming in the second half – and took advantage of the Panther mistakes. Louisburg scored 24 points off Paola turnovers and was a big reason for its second half surge.

It was a surge the Wildcats needed to make as they trailed Paola, 22-21, at halftime and they had to look for a way to jump start their offense.

“We were a little more aggressive,” Pfannenstiel said of his defense. “Sometimes we just sit back in our 2-3 zone and Paola’s offense looked a lot more comfortable versus that than our 1-3-1. Obviously our defense sparked our offense getting layups and run-outs and that was big for our energy level. It wasn’t that we weren’t playing hard, but we were just going through the motions and never got anything going.”

Senior Kohl Vogel led the Wildcats in scoring with 18 points and it was Vogel who helped get this team going late in the third quarter when he scored six straight points. Vogel made a runner to put Louisburg up three, then had a steal and score and then followed it up with another basket 15 seconds later on a steal by Madden Rutherford.

Rutherford recorded a team-high seven rebounds and senior Brayden Gage led Louisburg with four assists and four steals. Senior Dylan DeShazer was second on the team in scoring with eight and fellow senior Noah Hill had seven.

Vogel added six more points to begin the fourth quarter to put Louisburg up 13 points with five minutes left in the game and the Wildcats were able to hold on for the big win.

“We have been in quite a few games this year, and to be able to execute and finish the game was big and we needed that,” Pfannenstiel said. “I thought we played well for four quarters and I knew it was going to take a complete game to get a win and we did pretty well.”

Louisburg will try and continue its winning ways tonight when it hosts Ottawa, the No. 6 team in Class 4A, for homecoming. Tipoff is set for 7:30 p.m.


LOU               12           9             12           13 – 46

PAO               11           11           7             4 – 33

LOUISBURG (6-7): Kohl Vogel 8-14 2-2 18; Dylan DeShazer 3-4 1-3 8; Noah Hill 3-5 1-3 7; Ben Guetterman 2-5 1-2 6; Michael Waldron 2-2 0-0 5; Madden Rutherford 1-4 0-0 2. Totals: 19-40 5-11 46. 3-point field goals: 3, (Guetterman, Waldron, DeShazer)