Fowler post player Jett Reese was a fired-up individual Friday night in the Goldbugs' semifinal contest against the Wallace County Wildcats as he and his teammates were looking to exact some revenge for being knocked out of the football playoffs by their opponents.
Reese responded with 10-of-16 shooting for 24 points and also grabbed 14 rebounds in leading the unbeaten Goldbugs to a 75-63 victory over the Wildcats in a Class 1A-Division II state boys semifinal contest at Fort Hays State University. Reese also had four steals and two blocks in the contest.
Four players scored in double figures for Fowler (25-0): Reese, Taylin Bird 16, Tem Shetley 14 and Ty Clark 13. As a team, the Goldbugs shot 27-of-55 (49.1 percent) and outrebounded the Wildcats 32-23.
"We knew going in that they had great guards and that we wanted to show we had great guards, too," said Fowler head coach Scott Brown. "We knew we had an advantage in the posts with our height. We thought we'd have our way down there and we definitely did.
"That's the great thing about these kids. One guy may be on and everyone else finds them. Then it's another kid another night. We have an outside threat and an inside threat. Nobody cares who scores; if we win, everybody is happy."
Eli Kuhlman scored 16 points to lead Wallace County (19-6) and Cayden Daily added 12 in the loss.
The start for the Goldbugs was the same as most this season: start up strong and take a big lead. Fowled lead 22-8 after the opening quarter and extended it to 40-25 at intermission. Fowler was 14-of-30 from the field (7-of-20 from 3-point range).
The Wildcats (19-6) had no intentions of just letting the game slip away, cutting the margin down to 10 by the end of the third quarter and to single digits early in the final stanza; but a technical foul called on Reese on a dead ball situation (Reese knocked a player down after his opponent was fouled by a teammate) woke the Goldbugs up to stop the rally and earn their spot in the championship game.
The Goldbugs will face Axtell in today's championship game. Tip-off of the game is scheduled for 6:15 p.m.
WALLACE COUNTY (63) – Cayden Daily 8-15 0-0 12, Clay Schemm 2-2 1-2 5, Gavin Mote 3-8 1-4 7, Nate Klinge 2-2 0-0 5, Eli Kuhlman 7-17 1-2 16, Kyle Gfeller 1-2 0-0 2, Eric Gfeller 0-0 0-0 0, Luke Schemm 3-4 2-2 8, Cade Allen 0-0 0-0 0, Ivan Montes 1-2 0-0 3, Callahan Grud 2-3 1-2 5, Rick Dewess 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 27-55 8-12 63.