Observations all along the line - Kimball & the Southern Panhandle First

Busy Week For Horns After Nice Start

Kimball Boys Win First Two Games Convincingly At Bayard, Leyton

Kimball Longhorns boys basketball is looking good.

The Horns continue the busy pre-Christmas stretch of their schedule this week after opening the season 2-0 with convincing wins over Bayard and Leyton.

Next up for Kimball were Garden County in this week's Dec. 5 home opener, then games at Perkins County on Dec. 8, at home against Morrill on Dec. 9, and then Dec. 15 at Hershey. JV games open the action at 4:30 p.m. at Perkins County, 3 p.m. against Morrill, and 2 p.m. at Hershey.

Here are recaps for the Leyton and Bayard games, plus the Nov. 27 jamboree at Alliance.

Kimball 72, Leyton 56

Dec. 1

The Longhorns trailed Leyton at the half, 23-20, but dominated the third quarter and held their advantage in the fourth to win 72-56 and put an end to that four-game losing streak against the Warriors.

"Can't say enough of just how loud our fans were at the Leyton game on Friday, Kimball coach Chad Miller told the Observer. "I think our players fed off their energy and vice versa as they responded well after falling down at the end of the first half only to explode for 52 points in the second."

Kimball looks to be maturing as a team and taking it to a new level with key contributions from veteran players and underclassmen.

Kyler Lusche was a highlight for Kimball with 22 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists, and a 1.28 Value Point System (VPS) rating that measures overall performance.

Brandon Paxton got into a little foul trouble early on and only had 3 points going into the fourth quarter, when he exploded with 15 more points. He finished with 18 points, 9 rebounds, 3 assists and a 1.32 VPS.

Braxton Miller dished out a team leading 7 assists and 8 steals, along with 7 points, 5 rebounds, and a 1.69 VPS.

"Braxton Miller struggled a little from behind the arc this game but found other ways to make his presence known as he took our team's only charge on defense for the evening," coach Miller said.

Trevor Fuss started out Kimball's scoring, hitting his first of two 3-point shots, and ended the game with 10 points. He also gathered 5 rebounds and had the team's highest VPS rating of 1.92.

Also contributing were Wyatt Cords with 7 points and 3 steals, Bransyn Kiefer with 5 points and 5 rebounds, and Ryker Behrend with 3 points and 5 assists.

Jonathan Kruse led Leyton with 25 points.

As a team, Kimball shot 45.7% on 2 pointers, 26.5% behind the arc and 60% at the line.

"All in all it was not a great shooting night for us, but we all still stuck together and found a way in that second half to start the regular season 2-0," Miller said. "Proud of our boys and very appreciative of all the support our fans have shown these past few games."

Kimball 81, Bayard 24

Nov. 30

Kimball opened its season with what Miller called a "great team win," 81-24 at Bayard.

With that kind of point differential, the coach was able to dip into his bench. The starters did their thing, and the reserves gained experience.

Lusche recorded a double-double with 16 points and 11 rebounds to go with 6 steals and 5 assists.

Braxton Miller put up 16 points along with 7 steals, 4 assists and a 5.25 VPS.

Brandon Paxton scored 14 points.

Trevor Fuss shot 4-for-4 for 8 points while leading the team with a 7.00 VPS.

Wyatt Cords and Ryker Behrend added 7 points each.

Bransyn Kiefer recorded 4 points, 3 steals and a 1.86 VPS.

Landon Norberg played well with 2 points, 2 assists, 4 rebounds and a 3.00 VPS.

Also scoring were Greg Bingham with 5 points and Luke Berger with 2.

Alliance 70, Kimball 40

Nov. 27

Highlights against a formidable Alliance squad in the preseason jamboree included Kyler Lusche's double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds, Brandon Paxton's double-double with 10 Points and 12 rebounds, Ryker Behrend going 3-for-3 from behind the arc for 9 points, and Braxton Miller's 5 assists.

Other scoring came from Bransyn Kiefer with 4 points, Braxton Miller with 2 and Trey Cook with 1. 

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