BETHEL – The Seminole Chieftains played what may have been their best game of the season Monday night as they crushed Broken Bow 64-43 to win the Class 4A-4 Region A title at Bethel. The No. 15 Chieftains are one of only a few teams to hold Broken Bow under 50 points this season.
The game represents progress for the Chieftains basketball team.
“This is a huge step... we fought through the loser's bracket last year, and that's a different feel,” coach Josh Edenborough said. “I think this speaks volumes about our kids and about their belief in our program and each other and this is a huge stepping stone for us, and hopefully it's just the first of many.”
Adam Nance led the way with 22 points, but the scoring was passed around with several members of the Seminole squad.
Nance was on fire in the second half and was key in their success in holding on to a 23-point lead after the halftime break.
The big man dominated off the boards and around the rim but really threw down the gauntlet with 6:20 remaining in the fourth with a monster jam on an alley-oop from Shemmario Stephens. Nance had 16 points in the second half and had a dominating presence inside the paint and at the mid-range.
“What a ballgame he had, didn't he? He was aggressive, he was strong, he dominated the boards,” Edenborough said. "I think he really helped us set the tone for what we were going to be."
As the Savages were starting to recover at the start of the third with eight unanswered, Nance shut off the streak with a deep jumper to get Seminole back in it.
Nance had six points in the first half, but it was Stephens and Kason Clark who made up the scoring in the impressive and fast-paced first half.
Clark put on an 11 point performance through the first 16 minutes and had three 3-pointers and Stephens impressed with 10 more.
Seminole led 14-9 early into the second before putting on 17 unanswered capped on a pair of free throws by Trevor Brinker with 1:11 before the break. Cepado Wilkins landed a late trey to finish the second on a 20-2 run.
Nance led all scorers, Stephens completed the game with 16 points and Clark had 15.
The Savages were led by Titan Hobson with 12 points.
Both teams played a clean game and Seminole went 6-6 from the line – all in the second quarter – and Broken Bow was 6-7.
The first foul shots of the game went to Clark midway through the second quarter after Broken Bow coach Ryan Woolsey was assessed a technical foul.
Spreading around the scoring and making sure that his athletes put the team above the individual is something Edenborough has instilled in his kids and happy that they have bought into.
“It's not about me getting my points, it's about us getting the win,” he said. “And our guys believe in that. Kason Clark believes in that, Shemmario Stephens believes in that and Adam Nance believes in that and they'll do what it takes.”
The No. 15-ranked in Class 4A Chieftains will travel to Beggs Friday for the Area 4 championship game against No. 9 Roland, who beat No. 7 Metro Christian 50-49 Monday. The losing team will have one more shot to earn a spot at the state tournament Saturday against the winner of the consolation semifinal.