The South Gray Rebels boys basketball team survived and advanced Friday, overcoming a Little River Redskins team that completed a comeback but couldn’t close the door on South Gray.
The Rebels won 67-58. They’ll play Macksville in the Sub-State Championship Game scheduled for 5:45 p.m. Saturday at the Dodge City Community College Student Activity Center.
South Gray took a 13-3 lead in the first quarter, but Little River battled back, eventually tying the game in the third and taking a 47-45 lead with about 2:55 left in that quarter.
“We knew that no lead was big enough because they have so many kids that can shoot the 3-pointer,” South Gray head coach Mark Applegate said. “Like you said, they came back and took the lead, we just kept battling. We’ve got some kids that they just keep fighting.”
It was a pivotal quarter for Little River, which led 52-50 after the third after outscoring South Gray 22-12 in the quarter.
Throughout the third and into the fourth, it became a game where the teams seemingly countered each shot made by the opponent with a made one of their own of the same value.
Applegate said he liked the way his team kept their composure even when the Redskins put pressure on them and took the lead.
“(When) we got down, we didn’t get rattled, we didn’t get shook,” Applegate said. “We ran our offense and we took care of the basketball. We rebounded extremely well, and that’s what we have to do.”
Senior Clifton Miller had a team-high 23 points for the Rebels. Senior Austin Jantz had 20, sophomore Aaron Skidmore had 13 and freshman Brady Deges had 11.
For Little River, sophomore Jayden Garrison had a game-high 27 points. Sophomore Graham Stephens had 11, and senior Jace Garrison had 8.
The loss means the Redskins finish the season with an overall record of 17-7.
South Gray will take on Macksville Saturday in the Sub-State Championship Game scheduled for 5:45 p.m. inside the Dodge City Community College Student Activity Center.