Iola High’s Mustangs could not duplicate their earlier effort at Chanute against their archrivals here Tuesday. In December, the Mustangs had four solid quarters of basketball and rang up a Southeast Kansas League win over the Blue Comets.
With the Blue Comets in the house Tuesday, the Mustangs played a pretty good second half. It was the first half that made them pay the price of a 60-55 loss to the Comets.
“The first half we did not run our offense as it is suppose to be executed. We decided to play as individuals so we fell behind. We didn’t set picks for each other,” said Steve Taylor, IHS head coach.
“Doing the little things within the offense makes a difference. We didn’t play strong and physical.”
Iola faced a 33-17 halftime deficit. It was that close only because Michael Middleton hit a three-pointer with 38 seconds left. Iola had a chance to get more with the ball at the 7.4-second mark but didn’t a shot off.
“We talked about doing things the right way in the second half. That’s why we looked like a completely different team,” Taylor said.
The Mustangs began the road back with three straight baskets by Charles Apt to start the third quarter.
When Kent Toland hit two free throws with 5:41 on the clock, the Mustangs had cut the deficit to nine, 33-25. Chanute answered with seven unanswered, including a three-pointer by Andrew Parish.
Middleton downed three free throws and Toland scored to make it a 10-point game again. Parish nailed a second trey for the Comets and Griffin Williams hit a free throw to push their lead to 44-30.
Toland scored for Iola, then downed both ends of a one-and-one opportunity at the line. Middleton swiped the ball and had a layup to make it 44-36 with nine seconds left.
Then things got hairy. Taylor, who had been assessed a technical in the first half, was up yelling at a player to get into position. He was assessed with another technical foul, which meant he had to leave the game.
As Taylor left the court, Chanute’s Cory Henshall sank both technical foul shots to boost his team’s lead to 46-36.
Mustang assistant coach Dan Berg took the Mustangs the rest of the way.
Chanute scored twice in the first minute of the fourth quarter. The Mustangs fought back with a basket by Middleton and two free throws by Alec Peterson.
Middleton hit a trey to spark an 8-0 run ending with another three by Middleton.
Peterson drew a foul against Henshall at the 3-minute mark.
Henshall also was called for a technical.
Iola had an opportunity to draw even with Chanute without much time coming off the clock.
They were at the free-throw line for four points and awarded possession of the ball.
Unfortunately, Iola’s woes at the line continued. The Mustangs were 17 of 31 on foul shots for the game. Peterson hit one of two and Toland missed both technical foul shots.
Toland did hit a baseline jumper and Berg called Iola’s final timeout with 2:26 left. It was 54-51.
Dustin Eccles scored for Chanute. Iola couldn’t get a shot to fall until it was 58-51. Chanute hit 4 of 6 free throws in the final 40 seconds to seal the win.
Middleton finished with 19 points while Apt had 13 and four rebounds. Toland scored 12 points.
Iola shot 39.5 percent, 17 of 43, from the field. Seth Walden had eight rebounds and Peterson had six.
Henshall led Chanute with 17 points followed by Williams with 15 and Eccles with 10. The Blue Comets were 13 of 19 from the line.
Iola fell to 3-9 in SEK play and 5-11 overall. Chanute is 5-6 and 6-9.
The Mustangs host Parsons for homecoming Friday.
Iola won the junior varsity game 48-47 as Christian Kauth led the way with 15 points. Jerrik Sigg and Clint Heffern each added 11 and Drew Walden had 10 points.
Chanute won the freshman game 64-45. Levi Ashmore had 14 points for Iola followed by Mason Coons with 12 and Eli Grover with 11 points.
Iola (10-7-19-19—55) (FG/3-pt): Toland 4-4-3-12, S. Walden 2/1-0-3-7, Apt 4-5-2-13 Middleton 3/3-4-3-19, Peterson 0-4-5-4. TOTALS: 13/4-17-16-55.
Chanute (15-18-13-14—60) (FG/3-pt): Haight 1-0-3-2, Williams 3/1-6-1-15, Hale 1-0-2-2, Eccles 4-2-4-10, Parish 0/2-0-2-6, Bollig 1-0-4-2, Henshall 6-5-4-17, Miner 0-0-2-0, Wood 3-0-2-6. TOTALS: 19/3-13-24-60.
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