Heath, Baker pacing Demon offense

During a losing streak, things can get tougher.

Practices can become tedious, team morale can dip and frustrations can grow.

The ultimate cure for those symptoms is winning.

The Dodge City High School boys basketball team got a pick-me-up last week by snapping their four-game losing streak with wins over Great Bend and Cimarron.

"There is a much different bounce right now coming to the practice gym with our players," Dodge City head coach Dennis Hamilton said. "Obviously our confidence is at an all-time high. Winning a couple of games in a week can do that for you."

The Red Demon’s 49-40 win over Great Bend to start Western Athletic Conference play last Tuesday was their first win of the season. It was followed by a convincing 53-39 win on Friday against Cimarron under the bright lights at United Wireless Arena.

Leading the way for Dodge City in both games was junior Hunter Heath and senior Chris Baker. Heath led the Red Demons in both points and rebounds last week by averaging 16 points and 10 rebounds in the two games.

"(Heath) is one of those guys that we are starting to lean on," Hamilton said. "He’s a solid player right now."

Baker scored 31 points on 10-of-14 shooting from the field last week which included 19 points against Cimarron on Friday.

Coming into the season, opposing teams knew that Baker was going to be the Red Demons No. 1 scoring option and the senior guard has continued to grow more comfortable in that role.

"My teammates are doing a really good job of getting me open looks in the flow of the offense," Baker said. "I really learned how to play into this offense over the break. I learned what are good shots and what are bad shots and being selective has led to good results so far."

Dodge City (2-4, 1-0) will try keep to its winning ways this week with home games against Guymon, Okla., followed by a WAC matchup against Liberal. The Red Demons will host Guymon on Thursday instead of Saturday like previously scheduled.

The 2017 Dodge City Tournament of Champions bracket was released on Tuesday afternoon. The Red Demons will host Wichita North at 8:15 p.m. next Thursday night at United Wireless Arena. The tournament will get underway at 2 p.m. on Jan. 19 by Derby and Bishop Carroll.