POPLAR BLUFF 79 ROCKHURST 73
The defending Class 5 champions are just one win away from being the two-time defending Class 5 champions. Poplar Bluff held off a feisty Rockhurst squad to grab a 79-73 win in the semifinals. Poplar Bluff senior and future North Carolina Tar Heel, Tyler Hansbrough, led the way for the Mules with 31 points. His younger brother Ben, who is a junior, was right behind him with 27. Senior Brad Chronister pitched in 14.
Poplar Bluff led throughout, but Rockhurst stayed withing 5-7 points most of the game.
A three pointer from Zach Sheridan midway through the fourth quarter got the Hawklets to within three points and made the score 71-68. But that’s as close as they would get the rest of the way. Free throws made it nearly impossible for Rockhurst to come back. The Hansbrough brothers were a combined 24-of-30 from the charity stripe.
Conner Teahan led the way for the Hawklets in the losing effort. Tom Farm
VASHON 53 KICKAPOO 51
The Vashon basketball team won their 60th straight game with a 53-51 win over Springfield Kickapoo in the Class 5 semifinals. The Wolverines never led by more than seven points, as the Chiefs stayed close throughout. In fact, Kickapoo had two chances to tie or win it in the final 5.1 seconds. Shane Laurie missed a lay up, which was rebounded by Vashon, but they lost it out of bounds with less than two seconds to go. Laurie fired a three-pointer, which missed and the game was over.
Vashon’s Leon Powell was 7-of-8 from the floor, with 14 points to lead them in scoring. Kenneth Daniels had ten and was the only other Wolverine in double figure scoring. Laurie, who has committed to Southwest Missouri St., had 22 points in his final basketball game.
With the win, Vashon (which is ranked #1 in USA Today’s national poll) improved to 29-0 on the season. Kickapoo finished with a mark of 28-2.
ar hit 4-of-9 from the three point line for 16. Rockhurst fell one game short of vying for their 4th state title. They finished 21-8 on the season Poplar Bluff’s first title came last season. They improved to 25-4.