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Tales from the battle of 112: Central Plains versus Wilson

POSTED: January 10, 2012 3:00 a.m.

Oiler Patrick Hubbard, (11) goes up for a score against Wilson’s Jake Stoppel, left and Marcus Denham early in the Jan. 10 Dragon win at Wilson. I-R photo by Mark McCoy.

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WILSON --- It was the first meeting of Central Plains versus Wilson at the Dragon Den Tuesday and both games were exciting and extremely physical.

The roar of the crowd was deafening, quite possibly surpassing previous decibel levels at games played in the Wilson venue, due to the 1-point margins towards the end of both games.

The Lady Oilers defeated the Lady Dragons by a score of 38-36, in the final seconds of the game, no small feat on the Lady Dragon’s home court. Key to the Central Plains win was the rebounding and defensive play of the Lady Oilers who maintained a single-digit lead for the first three quarters of the game.

Lady Oilers Janea Hekele and Katie Hipp did a good job of handling the ball against Wilson’s Karlie Steinle and Emily Beneda. The battle beneath the boards between Lady Dragons Sarah Lanter, Dreamer Roberson and Central Plains’ Sydney Rugan and Jennifer Hitschmann was nothing less than brutal.

The Dragons won the boys’ game, defeating the Oilers 71-68 in overtime.

Oilers’ tall men Patrick Hubbard, Joe Barton and Evan Liebel did an effective job containing Wilson’s Jake Stoppel beneath the glass and the speed of Central Plains’ Chris Steiner and Benn Kirmer on the floor was remarkable.

However, Stoppel is a formidable offensive and defensive weapon and good team play by Cole Zelenka, Jordan Bess, Creighton Reeves and Marcus Denham overcame a Central Plains team that is just beginning to meld together and play with authority.

The boys’ game was equally as physical as the girls’ game and action had to be stopped twice during the game due to minor injuries.

Wilson will play Lincoln at Wilson Friday. The Lady Dragons game begins at 6 p.m. and the Dragons take the court against the Leopards at 7 p.m.

Central Plains takes on Victoria Friday night in Claflin. The Lady O’s play at 6 p.m. and the Oilers meet the Knights at 7 p.m.

Ellsworth was idle Tuesday and both the boys and girls teams will play Sacred Heart Friday in Ellsworth. The Lady ‘Cats play at 6 p.m. and the Bearcats play at 7 p.m.

The Bearcat grapplers will square off against Minneapolis in a NCAA dual at 6:30 p.m. Thursday in Minneapolis.

Read the stories about the Battle of 112 in the Jan. 19 edition of the I-R.

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