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Consolation bracket starts at Scottsbluff
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Consolation bracket starts at Scottsbluff

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For the second day of the Western Conference Tournament, the consolation bracket condensed at the SHS gym.

Going to the seventh place game in the girls bracket will be the Sterling Tigers after their 47-29 defeat at the hands of the Alliance Bulldogs.

Joining them will be the Arvada Bulldogs after they were beaten 90-17 by Gering. The Gering Bulldogs saw this game as opportunity to fix their mistakes from the previous day of play.

“We worked on things we needed to work on during this game. Our half-court defense and our zone a little bit, so we stayed in that for most of the night. Our big kids played really good early and in the second half, we challenged ourselves to play good half-court offense,” Gering girls coach Steve Land said.

The afternoon started off with the boys of Gering taking on the Bulldogs of Arvada in a 67-51 victory for Gering. Like the girls team, Gering used this game as a major turnaround compared to the first night of play.

“Offensively, we played pretty well outside of the turnovers. Our defensive intensity wasn’t quite where it needed to be, but we did pick it up in spurts. We closed the game really well, we started attacking the basket like we should have been all along. Overall, I’m happy that we won, but we still got to clean up some stuff,” Gering boys coach Kyle Cotton said.

In the most competitive game of the night, the Mitchell Tigers defeated the Alliance Bulldogs 69-67. Throughout the game the lead switched hands, with the Tigers pulling away late, a buzzer beating shot from Alliance’s Jayden McCracken brought the score within two, but it was too little too late.

With both teams looking to build experience and gain knowledge, the high-scoring nail-biter was just what they needed.

“We went into the first night a little nervous running a new system with a new coach, but tonight we got back to the basics and played some defense. They came out and played really hard so it’s all on the boys,” Mitchell coach Marty Gillen said.

With an almost entirely new team from last year, Alliance competed well considering their inexperience.

“We improved tonight offensively, but we took a step back defensively, and so when we get back to practicing next week we’ll address those things. It’s encouraging because this is such a young team and they hung in there they made plays late, but we really shot ourselves in the foot,” Alliance coach Michael Baker said.

After the games, the Gering and Mitchell boys will face off for fifth place Saturday Dec. 4 at 2:30 p.m. in Gering. The Alliance boys will face Arvada earlier the same day at 11:30 a.m. in Gering for seventh place.

For fifth place on the girls side, the Gering Bulldogs will take on the Alliance Bulldogs in Gering at 1 p.m. and seventh place, the Sterling Tigers will take on the Arvada Bulldogs.

Emanuel Casillas is a sports reporter with the Star-Herald. He can be reached at 308-632-9047 or emailed at emanuel.casillas@starherald.com

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Emanuel Casillas is a sports reporter with the Star-Herald. He can be reached at 308-632-9047 or emailed at emanuel.casillas@starherald.com.

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