The Abilene High School basketball teams returned to action at Marysville Friday night. The games were originally scheduled to be played in Abilene but got moved because Marysville is going to host district wrestling on February 5. Their basketball teams will now travel to Abilene on that date. Tonight marked the first time this season that both Abilene teams were able to play on the same night. The Cowgirls lost 45-26 in the first game of the night, while the Cowboys won at Marysville for a fourth straight time with a 58-47 victory.
In the Cowboys victory they were able to pull away in the fourth quarter in what was their NCKL opener. Abilene got off to a quick start, behind the play of Kaleb Becker and led 18-13 at the end of the first quarter. Becker scored 12 of his game-high 19 points in the opening quarter. He tied his career-high with his big night.
Marysville put together their best quarter of the night in the second quarter, where the Bulldogs outscored the Cowboys 18-10. Marysville connected on four three-pointers, with two of them coming from Senior, Gavin Pieschl. Pieschl scored 8 of his game-high 17 points in the quarter and was part of an 8-0 run to finish the quarter to grab a 31-28 lead at halftime.
In the third quarter, Abilene got 6 straight points from Grant Heintz. The last bucket during that stretch would give the Cowboys a 34-33 lead with 5:00 minutes to play in the third quarter. Abilene would not trail again. Heintz, scored 8 of his 12 points in the third quarter and was Co-Nex-Tech Wireless Player of the Game along with Becker.
In the fourth quarter, Marysville’s Bryar O’Neil connected on a 3 to cut Abilene’s lead to 47-44 with 7:20 to play. The Cowboys finished the game though on an 8-3 run, on their way to an 11 point victory. The Cowboys improved to 3-1, 1-0 with the victory, while Marysville suffered their first loss to fall to 4-1, 2-1 with the loss.
The girl’s game, it was a tale of two halves for the Cowgirls. They struggled shooting all night long. They finished 7-40, 17% from the floor in the loss but were able to keep in the game with free throw shooting. Abilene shot 8-10 from the foul line in the first half and only trailed 27-21 at the intermission. The Cowgirls also kept in the game with the play of Abi Lillard. The Senior scored 12 of her game-high 15 points in half, with 10 of those points coming in the second quarter. She entered the game with 2 three-pointers made, but connected on three in the loss.
In the second half, Abilene was held to 5 points and the Lady Bulldogs pulled away for the 19 point victory. The Cowgirls fell to 0-3, 0-2 and Marysville improved to 2-3, 2-1 with the victory.
The Abilene basketball teams will return home Tuesday to play Wamego. Wamego split with Concordia Friday night, in Wamego. The Wamego girls defeated Concordia 43-31 while the Concordia boys defeated Wamego 44-42.