WHITE CITY, Kansas (STPNS) -- huskies headed to sub-state tournament

The White City Huskies came from behind Friday night to defeat Burlingame 70-65 to secure themselves a slot in the sub-state tournament this week. The win put them in the championship game against Wakefield on Saturday night, where they just couldn't get their game going and took a 57-39 loss but making it to the championship round gave them a trip to the sub-state tournament. Out of 104 Kansas 1A schools, only 32 remain in tournament play and White City is one of those.

White City (15-8) will take on Centralia (21-1) Friday night at 7:30 pm at Holton High School in Holton, Kansas in the opening round of the sub-state tournament.

Regional Semi-finals

WC 70, Burlingame 65

"Just a really good win for us," said Coach Denny Crable after the game. "We competed hard and beat a good quality team."

Burlingame took the tip but the Huskies Ryan Nittler was the first to score Friday night in the semi-final matchup between the Huskies and the Bearcats of Burlingame. The two teams battled back and forth with the score tied at 6 after three minutes of play. The Huskies led 12-11 with three minutes to go in the quarter but a strong finish to the first period of play and a 3-pointer by Mark Morgan at the end of the quarter gave the Huskies a 20-16 edge.

Burlingame came back to tie the game at 22 with 4:15 remaining to be played in the second quarter and the Bearcats went on to outscore White City 9-4 as the quarter wound down for the Bearcats to hold a 31-26 advantage at the halftime break.

Coach Crable and the Huskies regrouped at halftime and came out strong in the third quarter, outscoring their opponent 26-14 to take a 52-45 lead into the final frame of the game. The Huskies held strong in that final period where Burlingame had a slight 20-18 edge but the Huskies lead in the third quarter held for the White City to advance to the regional championship game on Saturday afternoon.

"We played on offense as well as we can play for three quarters," said Coach Crable. "The second quarter, we didn't attack their zone well but the second half we did a great job of getting open shots."

The Huskies pulled down 25 defensive rebounds, were 5 of 10 from beyond the arc, shot 60% from the free throw line where the Huskies have struggled all year, and had balanced scoring in the first, third and fourth quarters and all of these were strengths to the win according to the coach.

Ryan Nittler and Mark Morgan had a great night offensively, scoring 26 and 24 points respectively. Morgan finished with a double double as he pulled down 16 rebounds.

Morgan's "extremely good game" with his rebounding and scoring; Nittler's offense and second half defense; Tim Ince pulling down nine rebounds and scoring nine points; Jerod Beavers 6 points and defense and the play of the bench all received high accolades from the coach.

Morgan and Nittler each had 3 steals and Beavers had 2 and Ince blocked 3 shots in the game.

Forty-two fouls were called in the contest with three players exiting the game early, Ince of White City and Thummel and Patterson of Burlingame. A total of 69 free throws were shot in the game with White City being 23 of 38 (61%) and Burlingame was 17 of 31 (55%).

WHITE CITY BOX SCORE: Nittler (3)-11-3-26; Morgan (2)-7-4-3-24; Jerod Beavers 2-2-4-6; Michael Miller 0-1-3-1; Ince 2-5-5-9; Jacob Beavers 1-0-1-2; Codi Smith 1-0-0-2. Team totals (5)-16-23-19-70.

Zach Dudson led the Bearcats scoring with 26 points. Team totals for Burlingame were (6)-15-17-23-65.

Regional Championship

WC 39, Wakefield 57

White City was again the first to get on the scoreboard on a field goal by Ryan Nittler but the Bombers responded with 10 unanswered points to hold a 10-2 advantage with three minutes to go in the first quarter. The teams battled back in forth for the remaining minutes and Wakefield held a 14-8 lead when the quarter ended. Wakefield continued to dominate the game, outscoring White City 13-5 in the second quarter to take a commanding 27-13 lead into halftime.

The two teams battled it out in the final quarters of the game with Wakefield holding a slight 14-12 advantage in the third quarter and a 16-14 advantage in the final stanza for Wakefield to take the championship with a 57-39 win.

"We just struggled offensively all night," said Coach Crable after the loss. "We didn't get into any rhythm and could not get anything to fall. Our kids had the will to win but we just didn't play like were are capable of playing. Lack of rebounding on our part and second chance opportunities gave Wakefield a big lift. Wakefield has a good team and deserves a lot of credit." Wakefield was the Eisenhower league champions and also tournament champions this year and will take a 18-4 record to the sub-state tournament at Marysville where they will take on Hanover who is 18-5.

Nittler again led the Huskies in scoring with 19 points including going 3 of 6 from beyond the arc. Tim Ince led the Huskies rebounding with 16.  Nittler had 5 rebounds, Morgan, Jerod Beavers and Codi Smith each had 3. Morgan had 4 steals and Ince had 2. Morgan blocked 3 shots and Ince had 1.

"We didn't have many strengths in this game as we struggled on both ends of the court," said Coach Crable. "Movement on defense and lack of rebounding position really hurt us. We didn't communicate very well and it just wasn't one of our better games."

WHITE CITY BOX SCORE: Nittler (3)-5-0-2-19; Morgan (1)-1-3-4-8; Jerod Beavers 1-2-2-4; Michael Miller 0-0-2-0; Ince 3-0-4-6; Jacob Beavers 1-0-3-2. Team totals (4)-11-5-17-39.

Cannizzo led Wakefield scoring with 27 points followed by McGee with 13. Team totals for the Bombers were (2)-19-13-15-57.