Girls basketball brings back bronze

Micheal Simmons, Blue M Editor-In-Chief

Third place may not be the best of finishes but it’s certainly a start for the Manhattan High girls basketball team as they took third at the McPherson tournament.

The team ended in dramatic fashion, beating Ulysses in the consolation game in double over time, 47-43 giving them a record of 9-4.

The team would began the tournament with Wellington and after beating them 81-51, they took on Olathe South where they would face defeat for the fourth time this season losing 21-62 in their largest deficit of the season so far.

“It was just pure excitement for the team when we went into overtime,” sophomore Jaiden Weixelman said. “Especially coming off the loss we had the day before, we all knew that there was no way we were going to lose that game. We wouldnt let it happen. I felt excited and knew we were still in it and that we had it.”

Regulation came to a close with the teams tied at 37 and the first overtime would end in a dramatic fashion with a jumper from Ulysses to tie the game yet again. It wasn’t until the second overtime that a few late drives lead by senior Haleigh Harper would get the team the lead.

“We had worked so hard up to that point so getting a basket was crucial to stay in the game,” Harper said. “Scoring always feels good but without my teammates I wouldn’t have been in the position to do it. Everyone at some point in that game contributed and it ended up being a win.”

Harper would lead the team in points, scoring 15 for the night, 6 of which came from free throws. The fate of the game was sealed with two pressure-filled free-throw attempts by junior Aloera Ostermann, which would give the team a four-point lead.

The team has come a long way since their earlier in the season, during which they suffered back to back losses. The team has won four of the five games that have occurred since those and they appear to be back on track, thanks to the players both on and off the court.

“Since the losses we have focused more on playing like a team,” Weixelman said. “Sometimes some of us would go on our own and that’s understandable but the more we play as a team the better we do and that has showed in our recent games. The bench energy is a big thing to, cheering on the girls when you’re playing is one thing but doing it on the bench is really important to.”

The team will go on to face Seaman on Friday at Seaman.