WAMEGO — The Wamego girls’ basketball team cruised in its 66-21 domination of Chapman in the opening round of sub-state action Monday night.
The Red Raiders (17-4) are fresh off their first winning season since 1998 and won the NCKL for the first time since 1992 with an undefeated league record.
“It’s the first time these girls have won a sub-state game in quite some time,” Wamego coach Jim Page said. “I’m so happy for the girls, the program and the school. I’ve had some struggles in the past and it’s just going 10-0 in league — winning it for the first time in 20 years — everything we are doing I’m really, really hoping will set us forward to have a tradition like the Holtons and the Silver Lakes — that we can just keep rolling with this momentum. That’s my real hope.”
Page’s daughters, Kaylee and Lanie Page, led the way for the Red Raiders.
Kaylee, a 6-foot-1 sophomore, scored 17 points and knocked down three 3-pointers, while Lanie, a 6-0 freshman, who skipped the eighth grade, scored a game-high 18 points.
Freshman Milea Anderson was the top scorer for the Irish with seven points.
“I thought we came out and did some good things,” Coach Page said. “We were kind of worried about being a little flat. Our kids have been kind of tired and it’s getting to that part of the season where everybody’s legs are kind of going.
“So it was nice to see some kids coming off the bench and being able to get in some good minutes and to rest my starters, and to do some things we’ve been working on in practice.”
The 3-ball was big part of Wamego’s game early with seven makes compared to three from Chapman (2-19).
“That is a big part of our game,” Page said. “It was nice to see Allison Seufert with nine points and some other kids chipped in points where they could — that was big.”
The Red Raiders opened the game down 1-0 to Chapman, but it was short-lived after Kaylee nailed her first trey of the game and the deficit quickly grew from there.
A quick cut and layup inside from Seufert widened the Wamego lead 11-3 and a layup from Kaylee off a nicely-placed pass from Lanie minutes later put the Red Raiders ahead even further at 21-5.
While junior Jordan Woods was able to knock down a 3-pointer from the left of the key for the Irish with less than 30 seconds left in the opening quarter, the 5-3 Seufert dashed across the floor with 4 seconds left and hit a trey of her own at the buzzer.
Seufert’s 3-pointer widened Wamego’s lead to 24-10. The Red Raiders added to that quickly in the second quarter when Morgan Beemer nailed a 3.
More long distance shots from both Kaylee and Lanie splashed through the net and the Red Raiders led at the halftime break 42-19.
Wamego took care of Chapman in the second half with dominant defense, as the Red Raiders held Chapman scoreless in the third quarter and to just two points in the fourth.
The Red Raiders will move on to play Abilene on Thursday night in Holton. The Cowgirls were 6-4 in the NCKL and 12-8 overall.
“Abilene shoots the ball really well,” Page said. “We’ll be on a neutral court and people can hit some shots. It will be a struggle. They’re a good team and well-coached. We’ll have to play.”
Chapman 10 9 0 2 — 21
Wamego 24 18 18 6 — 66
CHAPMAN (21) — Anderson 7, Woods 6, Beemer 5, Sutter 3.
WAMEGO (66) — L. Page 18, K. Page 17, Seufert 9, Evans 6, Griffitt 4, Rowden 4, Baker 3, Vontz 3, Woodward 2.
3-pointers — Chapman 3 (Woods 2, Sutter). Wamego 7 (K. Page 3, L. Page 2, Bake, Seufert).