By BOB LATTA
The Hesston Swather Mean Machine kept on rolling Monday night (March 3) in the first round of sub-state play, thrashing the Sedgwick Cardinals 71-40 in Hesston. The Cardinal season ends at 8-13.
The next two rounds of sub-state action will be in Marion, which is hosting the rest of the eight-team tournament.
The No. 1 seeded Swathers, now 21-0, on Thursday (March 6) will face Marion, which defeated Halstead in another first-round match-up. The Warriors are 13-8 after topping Halstead 38-34. The Swathers' game is scheduled to begin at 7:30 p.m.
The boys sub-state championship game is scheduled for 7:30 p.m. on Saturday (March 8). The winner advances to the Class 3A state tournament in Hutchinson next week.
In the game against Sedgwick on Monday night, if the Cardinals had any thoughts of an upset, they fell by the wayside in a hurry.
Wyatt McKinney opened the scoring for Hesston less than a minute into the game. Tyler McCartney sank a pair of free throws at the 6:47 mark and Sedgwick coach Darren Crumrine called a quick timeout.
McCartney scored about a minute later and Justin Smith dropped in a bucket at the 5:21 mark and Crumrine called a second timeout to try to stem the tide. It didn't work. When the quarter ended, the Swathers led 19-0.
The Cardinals ironically nearly scored on their last-second shot of the period – from three quarters of a court away from their basket.