West Platte girls can't find offense in North Platte Invite opener

DEARBORN, Mo. — West Platte came up against superior firepower in the first action of the North Platte Invitational. In the opener of two pool play games, the Bluejays never scored more than six points in a quarter — shut out in the second quarter — during a 47-18 loss to the No 2-seeded Jefferson on Monday, Jan. 25 at North Platte High School. West Platte owns the No. 6 seed in the six-team field and knew the difficulty in the schedule of this tournament.

“We tried to pick up the intensity,” West Platte coach Jennifer Lawson said. “We just couldn’t seem to hit a bucket or make a pass tonight. It was rough.”

West Platte struggled to set up offensive sets, especially in the second quarter, against a full-court pressure trap defense. Jefferson forced 10 turnovers in the second quarter and ended up with a 28-6 halftime lead.

West Platte senior Taylor Binkley scored a team-high eight points for West Platte, but just four players scored for the Bluejays. West Platte faced No. 3 seed Mid-Buchanan in pool play on Tuesday, Jan. 26, but he result was not available at The Citizen’s deadline.

“I think we learned that intensity needs to be consistent if we want to compete,” Lawson said.

In the remaining tournament action, host North Platte comes in as the No. 4 seed and faced No. 5 seed Northland Christian in pool play on Tuesday, Jan. 26 — the result also not available at The Citizen’s deadline — before playing top-seeded Mound City on Thursday, Jan. 28.

Place games are scheduled for Friday and Saturday with the championship between the two pool winners on Saturday.

On the boys side, North Platte entered as the No. 2 seed with matchups against No. 6 Northland Christian on Tuesday, Jan. 26 and No. 3 seed Jefferson on Thursday, Jan. 28. West Platte’s boys, the No. 4 seed, faced matchups with No. 5 Mound City on Tuesday, Jan. 26 before a matchup with KCI Conference rival and top seeded Mid-Buchanan on Thursday, Jan. 28.

The boys’ championship and third-place games are also scheduled for Saturday, while the boys fifth-place and girls fifth- and third-place games will be Friday.