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NC Thunder Fights in Nail Biting Games Against the Sabetha Bluejays

By: Brendon Feltner & Blake Stallbaumer

January 23, 2019

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    Coming into this matchup against the Sabetha Bluejays, the Nemaha Central Middle School boys were looking for revenge. The Thunder boys lost a close game in football to Sabetha and they were looking forward to a rematch in basketball. This rivalry game took place on Monday, January 14.

    For the 8th grade A-team, the Thunder had gotten out to a rough start spotting Sabetha 11 points in the first quarter. The score at the end of the first quarter was 11-0, Sabetha. Going into the second quarter, NC had a talk with Coach Cory Bass in between quarters and this helped the team rally back to make it a close game, 11-9 at halftime.

    The third quarter consisted of lackadaisical defense for the Thunder allowing Sabetha to score 12 points, while they only scored 11. The score at the end of the third quarter was 20-23 with the Thunder trailing. In the final quarter, it was a battle all the way through. NC had been making mistakes left and right and Sabetha was capitalizing on them. Sabetha played tough defense on their press and forced NC players to make bad passes leading to turnovers, which led to Sabetha baskets. Near the end of the game, the Thunder team was down by 1, 33-34 and Sabetha had possession of the ball. They came down and exposed the NC defense and forced the lead to 33-36. After that basket, there wasn’t enough time left in the game to make a comeback. This loss was the first for the 8th grade A-team and they are 2-1 on the season.

    Will Heinen said, “We struggled in the first half and started to make a come back in the 2nd half.”

    Before the game started, the 8th-grade B-team was looking to get their first win of the season. At the start of the game, it had looked much like the A-Team game. There was plenty of turnovers to go around. The Thunder team struggled on both offense and defense in the first quarter, only scoring 3 points and allowing Sabetha 7 points. By halftime, the score was 7-13, with a strong Sabetha lead.

    Coming out of halftime, Coach Bass had talked to the team and told them to clean up their mistakes. The third quarter was close in scoring. The Thunder added 4 points, while Sabetha scored 5. In the fourth quarter, the Thunder team tried hard to make a comeback, but they were only able to score 4 more points and Sabetha gained 6 points to win the game. Even though they lost, the 8th-grade B-Team had played good basketball and gained some more experience under their belt. Their record is 0-3 on the season.

    This year’s 7th grade A-team is very dominant. They have been able to blow out all the teams they have played so far and were wanting to include Sabetha. The Thunder team got out to a fast start scoring 14 points to Sabetha’s 5. The next quarter, the Thunder outmatched Sabetha’s 3 points with their 5 points. At halftime, the score was 19-8, NC leading in the game.

    Coming out of halftime the scoring was nearly even with the Thunder scoring just 2 more than Sabetha. The score at the end of the third quarter was 27-14. In the fourth quarter, Sabetha had started to rally back but didn’t have enough time scoring 11 points to the Thunder’s 4. The final score was 31-25 with another Thunder victory. 

    “It was fun to finally have a close, fun game," said Carter Rottinghaus.

    For the 7th-grade B-team game, both teams got out to an even start scoring 10 in the first quarter. The second quarter was a struggle for the Thunder. They didn’t score a basketball while allowing 4 points. The score at halftime was 10-14 with a Sabetha lead.

    During halftime, Coach Schuyler Mayberry talked to his team about getting the job done. The Thunder team scored 6 coming out of half while allowing Sabetha only 4 points, making the score a little tighter, 16-18. In the fourth quarter, things were going down to the wire, but in the end, the Thunder team outscored the Bluejays 7 to 4. The Thunder team had notched out a close win against Sabetha, 23-22.

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