By Michelle Watson
The season came to a disappointing end for the Garner-Hayfield-Ventura boys basketball team when they dropped the 2A District final game to South Hamilton (20-1) on Tuesday, Feb. 19, in Webster City.
“We knew coming into the game South Hamilton would be tough to beat. They have some solid guards and move the ball very well,” said Coach Jake Young.
The Cardinal’s game plan was to keep them out of the paint, but the Hawks ended up converting on their perimeter game early.
GHV got off to a terrible start, due in part to cold shooting and turnovers. The Hawks, on the other hand couldn’t miss. They sunk five three-pointers in the first quarter to take a substantial 23-7 lead.
Zach Suby came off the bench to start the second quarter and added a spark, connecting on two three-point shots, 30-13. Unfortunately, the rest of the team didn’t catch on and the Cards were outscored 14-8 in the second quarter. South Hamilton took a comfortable 37-15 lead into the break.
The Hawks didn’t slow down after the break. Despite a couple of three-point shots by Justin Reding, the Cardinals were outscored 19-13 in the third quarter for a score of 56-28.
GHV finally started connecting on some shots in the fourth quarter. James Betz and Reding hit a pair of treys to open the fourth quarter, 58-34. The game ended with Fred Burnett coming off the bench and sinking two threes for the final, 71-54.
“I thought we did a great job running the floor as a team in the second half. I was proud of the way the guys left it all on the floor against a team that doesn’t make many mistakes. Unfortunately, it was their night shooting the ball and we weren’t able to recover,” said Young.
Betz and Suby scored in double figures with 16 and 12 points respectively. Suby was a perfect 4/4 from the three-point line. Betz shot 100 percent at the free throw line. Rounding out the scoring was Reding with nine, Burnett had six, Kevin Meyers scored five points, Jared Graham had three points and Landon Dalbeck and Austin Bahensky had two and one-point respectively.
Betz also led the team under the boards with 11 rebounds. Reding hauled in five and Graham collected three rebounds.
Graham led the team in assists with five. Suby and Dalbeck had two assists apiece.
Collecting one steal apiece was Betz, Reding, Graham and Dalbeck. Betz and Reding each had one blocked shot.
The Cards ended their season with an overall record of 16-7. GHV finished in third place in the Top of Iowa West Conference with a record of 12-4. Bishop Garrigan won the conference title.