Hesston hits free throws to stop SE-Saline

Mark Schnabel
The Kansan
Hesston sophomore Anna Humphreys hit 10 of 13 free throws en route to 17 points in a win Thursday over Southeast of Saline. Hesston faces Halstead at 2 p.m. Saturday in the Class 3A sub-state finals.
Hesston junior Katherine Kueker scored 15 points Thursday in a 49-39 win over Southeast of Saline in the Class 3A sub-state semifinals.
Hesston junior Caryn Yoder draws defensive attention from Southeast of Saline during play Thursday.
Hesston High School junior Heather Ferralez looks for a pass during play Thursday in Class 3A sub-state play.
Hesston High School sophomore Sydney Kaiser handles the ball during play Thursday against Southeast of Saline.

HESSTON — The Hesston Swather girls basketball team set up an all-Harvey County, Central Kansas League final in the Class 3A sub-state in Hesston, stopping Southeast of Saline 49-39 on Thursday night in Hesston.

The 15-6 Swathers will take on top-seeded Halstead at 2 p.m. Saturday in Hesston.

Hesston outscored the Trojans 19-5 from the free-throw line, led by Anna Humphreys, who went 10 of 13 and finished the game with 17 points. Katherine Kueker scored 15 points.

“Towards the end of the game, you have to knock down shots and finish your free throws,” Humphreys said. “They were running a triangle-and-two. I just had to knock down the shots that were open. This was the second time we played them. They are a much better team from the first time, but so are we.”

“If we would have hit some free throws in the first half, and some of our chippy shots, we would have had a bigger cushion,” Hesston coach Matt Richardson said. “It’s been a while since we’ve been in a sub-state final. It’s kind of nice to be back there. The girls will have to realize there will be a little more pressure. We will have to make some free throws and finish some layups.”

Hesston won the first meeting 63-41 in the season opener.

Southeast, which ends the season 15-7, was led by Karsyn Schlesener with 13 points and Maddie Harris with 12 points

Down 5-2, the Swathers were able to get Southeast in some foul trouble, making an 8-2 run to end the first quarter.

Down by seven in the second quarter, 35 hit a 3-pointer for the Trojans just before the buzzer to get Southeast within four, 22-18.

Southeast got within one early in the third quarter, but the Swathers replied with a 10-0 run and led 37-28 at the end of the period.

The Trojans drew within six early in the fourth quarter. An Alex Martin jumper put Hesston back up by eight with 2:41 remaining. Hesston hit five of its next six free throws to put the game out of reach.

Hesston downed Halstead 44-31 back on Feb. 20.

“I’m real excited about that,” Humphreys said. “We have to shut Karenna (Gerber) down.”

“Derek (Schutte) is a good coach,” Richardson said. “They have a lot of athleticism. We’re going to have to shoot the ball well again. We had several turnovers against them. We’re going to have to control the boards and make the easy shots.”

Mark Schnabel can be reached at mschnabel@thekansan.com

HESSTON GIRLS 49, SE-SALINE 39

Hesston;13;9;15;12;—;49

SE-Saline;7;11;10;11;—;39

HESSTON (15-6) — Kaiser 2 1-1 0, 5; Ferralez 0 0-0 5, 0; Yoder 1 (1) 1-3 0, 6; Funk 0 0-0 0, 0; Martin 2 0-2 2, 4; Humphreys 2 (1) 10-13 1, 17; Bartell 0 2-3 0, 2; Kueker 5 5-5 2, 15; TOTALS 12 (2) 19-27 10, 49.

SOUTHEAST OF SALINE (15-7) — Ptacek 0 1-2 1, 1; Schlesener 3 (1) 4-4 4, 13; Yianakopulos 0 0-0 3, 0; Harris 3 (2) 0-0 2, 12; Pearson 1 0-0 4, 2; Goetz 0 0-0 2, 0; Caselman 0 (3) 0-0 4, 9; Jacobson 1 0-0 4, 2; TOTALS 8 (6) 5-6 23, 39.