Saturday, August 18, 2018
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Boys shoot well at Chase County

Patience leads to easy buckets.

IMPERIAL—Gothenburg boys learned Friday night that patience is a virtue, even on the basketball court.

The Swedes battled Chase County nearly point for point in the first half and then sat back, waiting patiently for easy baskets en route to a 50-35 win.

“We’re not a patient bunch,” said coach Kent Koehn, “but I think they learned that they can pass the ball around without being stagnant and still come up with good shots.”

In the first quarter, Koehn said both teams ran man-to-man defense and matched each other shot for shot.

Gothenburg finished the period with a 20-15 lead and Koehn decided to try something different.

“We switched to a match-up zone sagging on their posts,” he said. “They struggled a little.”

Gothenburg built a 10-point lead midway through the second quarter.

Then Chase County decided to try the zone and cut the Swede advantage to only two or three points.

“We started tossing up the ball too quickly,” Koehn said.

That’s when Koehn emphasized patience.

The Swedes led 29-23 at halftime and spread the gap in the third quarter with more disciplined play.

“As a fan it probably wasn’t much fun to watch the second half,” Koehn said, “but we got what we wanted. And once we pushed the lead to double digits, Chase County looked defeated.”

Beating the Longhorns by 15 points was a pleasant surprise for Koehn.

“Everyone else they’ve played has been tight,” the coach said. “This was a good win for us.”

Landen Haake scored 26 points to lead Gothenburg. He also had seven rebounds and seven assists.

Now at 6-6, the Swedes turn their attention to Broken Bow and Kearney Catholic before focusing on the Southwest Conference tournament.

Broken Bow comes to town on Friday. The Indians (3-9) have lost seven straight games to quality opponents and Koehn says the schools have drummed up a rivalry.

“It will be a good test for our kids,” he said.

Then the Swedes travel to Kearney Catholic (7-5) before hosting Broken Bow again in the opening round of the SWC tournament on Monday.

“At least we’ll know what to expect come tournament time,” Koehn said.

See complete bracket and accompanying story for more information.