It was an evening of mixed emotions for the Abilene High School Basketball Teams, in Council Grove, Tuesday night. The Abilene Cowgirls defeated the Lady Braves 46-41. It was the first time they beat Council Grove in three seasons. The Cowboys on the other hand had a 14 point halftime lead erased in a 61-57 loss.
The Cowgirls struggled last Friday to find offense in their 47-32 loss to Marysville. Tuesday night, Junior, Sydney Burton gave the Cowgirls the offensive boost they needed. She scored a career high 29 points in the victory. Burton connected on four three-pointers and was 10-11 at the free throw line. She was also clutch as she converted on six straight free throws with under a minute to play in the game to seal it for the Cowgirls. She was named the First National Bank of Hope Player of the Game.
It was a game of runs in the girls contest. Abilene fell behind 7-2 in the first quarter but responded with a 20-2 run to take their biggest lead of the game at 22-9 on a pair of free throws by Burton with 2:46 to play in the first half. The Lady Braves would counter with an 18-5 run to tie the game at 27 with 3:30 to play in the 3rd quarter on a bucket from Senior, Morgan Poole. The Cowgirls took the lead for good, with a 10-0 run, to go up 37-27 with 48 seconds left in 3rd. Council Grove got a three from Junior, Hailey Hower to start the fourth quarter and would pull to within 37-33 with 7:03 to play. That would be as close as the Lady Braves would get as Abilene would go on to the five point victory. Hower, had a big night for Council Grove. She finished with a team high 19 points and hit on five three-pointers.
The Cowgirls improved to 11-5 with the victory and will step back into league play Friday at Wamego. Abilene defeated Wamego 37-24 on January 30th. Wamego lost at Chapman 53-43, Tuesday night. Council Grove has now lost three straight and are 13-4 on the season.
The Cowboys fell to Council Grove for the first time since 1983. Abilene got out to a quick start as they led 20-12 at the end of the first quarter and 34-20 at halftime. Their 14 point lead at the half matched their big lead of the game.
Abilene, Senior, Tucker Robinson connected on two free throws with 2:38 to play in the 3rd quarter to give the Cowboys a 38-31 advantage. That’s when the game would turn. The Braves would go on a remarkable 18-0 run to take a 48-42 lead with 5:35 to play in the game on a pair of free throws by Senior, Treyse King. Council Grove would never trail again in the game.
Abilene was led by Senior’s Tucker Robinson and Noah Wildman who finished with 16 points. Junior, Damian Hartman, got his first career start and finished with a career high 13 points. Robinson, was named the First National Bank of Hope Player of the Game. Senior, Sam Kirk would lead the way for the Braves as he scored 18 of his game high 20 points in the second half.
The Cowboys have lost two straight now for the first time since December and are 10-6 on the season. Abilene travels to Wamego Friday. The Cowboys defeated the Red Raiders 52-32 on January 30th. Wamego lost at Chapman 70-54 Tuesday night. Council Grove improve to 8-9 with the victory over Abilene and snapped a five game losing streak.