Both top seeded teams were the eventual winners of this years’ Panhandle Athletic Conference Basketball Tournaments, with the Crawford Rams taking top honors in the boys’ bracket, and Morrill in the girls’.
The Rams, now 11-4, faced Hay Springs Friday after receiving a first-round bye, running over the Hawks 77-28 in the semi-final game.
Four Crawford players, Aaron Alcorn, Blaine Flack, Austin Kennedy, and Bryce Oetken scored in double-digits. Alcorn and Kennedy were the top scoring Rams with 16 and 14 points, respectively.
Hemingford, who defeated Morrill 66-33 in their own semi-final game, advanced to play the Rams in Saturday’s championship game.
Before the championship game started Saturday, the third place game featuring Morrill and Hay Springs was played. The Hawks, which had edged Edgemont 60-57 in the opening round of the tournament, were unable to come up with a second win, falling to Morrill 61-36, and finishing the tournament in fourth place.
The Crawford boys claimed their title later that afternoon defeating the Bobcats 57 to 48.
Monday’s opening round of the girls’ tournament saw the bottom four seeds facing off to determine who would face top-seeded Morrill and second-seeded Sioux County later that week in the semi-finals.
Third-seeded Edgemont narrowly defeated the Crawford girls 38-35, and Hemingford won over Hay Springs 46-40 to move on.
Sioux County struggled to contain Edgemont’s offense early in their semi-final game Friday evening, falling behind 28-14 at the half. Despite eventually outscoring the Moguls 17-10 in the final frame, the Warriors fell short, losing 47-40, sending Edgemont to the championship game.
The Morrill Lions would have no trouble in their first action of the tournament, dispatching Hemingford 56-27 to advance to join Edgemont in the Championship game.
Kicking off the final games of the tournament, Hay Springs and Crawford squared off in the fifth-place game, with Crawford taking fourth place after defeating the Hawks 56-34.
Sioux County, despite recent success and entering the tournament as the second seed, found themselves playing for third-place with Hemingford after their semi-final loss to Edgemont.
The Warriors exploded out to a 41-25 lead in the first half, then closed the deal with another 22 in the second, winning easily over the Bobcats 63-38.
In the championship game things looked to be somewhat even between the Lions and the Moguls with Morrill enjoying a slight 22-19 lead over Edgemont after the first half, but a third period in which the Lions held the Moguls to just two points while scoring 14 of their own sealed the deal, with the team eventually winning the championship game 47-33.
Petyon Gibson (12), Stefani Tarin (13), and freshman Ilycia Guerue (11) all scored in double-digits for the Lions.
Edgemont senior Avery Van Eaton led both teams in scoring with 20 points.