RIVERSIDE, Mo. — Park Hill South missed out on some opportunities to stretch out a nine-point lead in the second quarter against a smaller opponent.
Didn’t seem like a big problem until Barstow, last year’s Class 3 Missouri State Basketball Championships runner-up, started to knock down shots from beyond the arc in the second half. Knights sophomore guard Jacob Gilyard hit a quartet of 3s after halftime, helping Barstow run away for a 65-49 victory Thursday, Dec. 4 at Park Hill South High School.
Park Hill South dropped to 2-1 on the season under first-year coach Dan Parra after a 44-39 win against Raytown two nights earlier. The Panthers faced St. Pius X in the opening round of the Liberty North Invitational on Tuesday, Dec. 9, but the result was not available at The Citizen’s deadline.
Playing the last home game until Dec. 16, Park Hill South fell behind early, battled back to seemingly take command and then wilted.
The Panthers led 26-17 late in the second quarter, but Barstow scored the final five of the half to cut its deficit to four at the break. The Knights’ run extended to 10-0 on a 3-pointer from junior guard Tripp Walsworth about 1 minutes, 15 seconds into the third quarter.
That lead lasted about 30 seconds, but Park Hill South point guard James Byrd (team-high 12 points) picked up his third foul just seconds later.
Gilyard hit a 3 from the right corner to reclaim the advantage at 30-28 and then added another with 4:17 left in the third quarter to stretch the Knights’ lead to 35-28. He finished with a game-high 26 points — 20 in the second half.
Barstow junior forward Jeriah Horne scored the Knights’ first seven points on the way to 20 total.
However, a combination of four bench points from senior guard Easton Fortuna and Byrd’s play at the top helped Park Hill South to 8-0 surge. Panthers junior forward Ryan Welty hit the second of his two early 3s to put the Panthers up 15-7 with 1:03 to play in the first quarter.
Fortuna, Byrd and Welty combined for 22 in the first half but tallied just three combined in the second half.
Welty finished with nine, only two after the first quarter, and Byrd’s only scoring in the second half came on a split of two free throws in the fourth quarter. He fouled out with a technical in the final minute of regulation.
Allen Hyatt, a bruising 6-foot-6 senior, added eight for the Panthers — four in each half — and sophomore reserve guard Jacob Kline provided a spark late with 10 points, eight in the fourth quarter.
Platte County 57, Fort Osage 51
Pirates coach Rick Hodge said he didn’t change much at halftime — except his team’s attitude.
After building a comfortable 15-7 lead after the first quarter, Platte County switched off defensively. Fort Osage took full advantage, scoring 24 points in the second frame to take a 31-27 lead into the break.
“I got on them,” Hodge said. “I didn’t like the effort in the second quarter — period. That’s defense. That’s transition. That’s the way we were running our offense. It can’t happen, and they heard about it at halftime. There were no adjustments. It was calling people out, especially when you have a senior-laden team.
“If the effort’s not there it’s got to hurt a little bit.”
Platte County (2-2), coming off a fourth-place showing in last week’s Savannah Invitational, picked up the defensive efforts after the locker room talk and only allowed four points to the Indians in the third quarter. The Pirates erased their one-point deficit when shots began to fall in the final 8 minutes.
“It was a lot of fun once we started playing like that,” said Platte County senior Sam Zimmerman, who finished with a game-high 22 points. “The crowd got into it so it was great. We just finished. We started making the easy plays. Before, we were making mental mistakes. We just fixed all that.”
Platte County senior Topher Kilkenny chipped in 14 points, including 3-for-4 free-throw shooting down the stretch to ice the game.
C.J. Pitts added eight points in the fourth quarter to be the third Pirates player in double figures, finishing with 10. His first 3-pointer during the fourth quarter gave the Pirates their first lead since the first quarter.
Platte County traveled to North Kansas City on Dec. 9 but the results were not available at The Citizen’s deadline.
Platte County returns home on Dec. 12, hosting St. Joseph Lafayette, who the Pirates lost to 58-48 in the semifinals of the Savannah Invitational.
Park Hill 65, Winnetonka 36
Park Hill defeated the Griffins on Dec. 4 at Park Hill High School to move to 2-0 on the season. Deionte Wilson led the offense with 14 points and Wichita State signee Landry Shamet added 13 for the Trojans.