PITTSBURG — A back-and-forth affair in the first round of sub-state on Tuesday went in favor of the Pittbsurg High School boys’ basketball team, winning 70-57 over Lansing at home.
The Lions gave Pittsburg a run for its money as the underdogs in hostile territory, but couldn’t finish as well as they started.
“It took a long time tonight to finally settle down,” PHS head coach Kiley Roelfs said. “It wasn’t until the fourth quarter that something clicked. I tip my cap to Lansing as the No. 16 seed because they came into this game ready to play and knocked down some big shots. We are going to use tomorrow to reflect on this game then have a heavy day of preparation on Thursday for Aquinas on Friday night. We are excited about a great atmosphere and crowd on Friday.”
The Purple Dragons were lifted the win by 32 points from Marque English which pushed his career total over 1,000 points.
“Marque is a very hard-working, determined and strong-minded young man,” Roelfs said, “He is one of the guys that helped get us here and he tonight he continued to do that.”
3-pointers were falling for the Lions in the early going, as they kept pace with PHS in the first three quarters.
The Purple Dragons rallied back from an early deficit to take a two-point advantage into the second quarter following seven points by Trent Austin.
Lansing went on to regain the lead at 34-32 by halftime, but a 3-pointer by Drew Roelfs to begint the third quarter put PHS back in control.
The lead continued to trade hands throughout the third quarter, before the Purple Dragons pulled away in the fourth by out scoring the Lions 23-9 led by eight points apiece from English and Jerek Butcher.
Austin finished the game as the second-leading scorer for PHS with 14 points, while his teammates Chase Curtis and Roelfs each contributed 10 points apiece.