The Abilene High School Basketball teams were swept at Rock Creek Tuesday night. In game one the Cowgirls lost to the Lady Mustangs for the first time since January 9, 2009. The Rock Creek girls won 42-29 and led by as many as 22 in the third quarter. In the boys game, Abilene couldn’t hold a 10 point third quarter lead in a 61-56 loss.
In the first game of the night, the Cowgirls kept the game close early and trailed 12-11 at the end of the first quarter. Abilene seemed to have momentum as they entered the second quarter as Senior Jade Vopat hit a three-pointer at the buzzer to end the first quarter. The momentum would quickly shift. The Lady Mustangs started the second quarter on a 14-1 run and never looked back. Rock Creek was paced by 5’10” Sophomore Grace Gehl who poured in 10 of her game-high 17 points in the second quarter. The Lady Mustangs took a 31-17 lead into halftime. Rock Creek clamped down defensively in the third quarter and held the Cowgirls to 2 points and extended their lead to 41-19 as they entered the fourth.
In the boys contest Abilene overcame a quick start by Rock Creek. The Mustangs led 18-13 at the end of the first quarter. Rock Creek entered the game with one of the best scorers in the state in 6’1” Junior Dawson Zenger. He averaged 19.6 ppg last season and erupted for 39 in last Friday’s 67-35 season opening victory over Clay Center. He started the night strong with 9 first quarter points. Abilene would slow him down for a while. He scored just 9 total points in the second and third quarters. That would help the Cowboys lead 30-28 at halftime and by as much 10 points on two separate occasions in the third quarter. Abilene led 46-36 with 1:23 to play in the third quarter on a bucket by Travis Beetch. Beetch had a big night especially in the middle quarters as he scored 13 of his career-high 22 in the second and third quarters.
The fourth would belong to Zenger. Rock Creek trailed 48-40 after a bucket by Kaleb Becker with 6:55 to play in the game. The Mustangs would then go on a 12-2 run capped by a basket by Zenger with 3:20 to play to give Rock Creek their first lead since the second quarter. The Mustangs would never trail again. Zenger was dominant, he would score 12 straight points during one stretch in the final quarter and finished with 14 of his game-high 31 points in the fourth.
Abilene will return home Friday for the final time before the holiday break to face Augusta. The Augusta boy’s team finished second in the state last year in Class 4A.