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Manning, Broncos pound 49ers -10/20/2014, 10:26 AM

Charles the Chiefs' all-time leader -10/20/2014, 10:17 AM

'Boys move to 6-1 -10/20/2014, 10:16 AM

K.C. kicks past Chargers -10/20/2014, 10:16 AM

Jump back to 1985 -10/20/2014, 10:16 AM

Keselowski keeps title hopes alive with win at Talladega -10/20/2014, 10:16 AM

FHSU women earn shutout, set record -10/20/2014, 10:16 AM

KSU sits atop Big 12 -10/19/2014, 6:42 AM

Early mistakes sink Jayhawks -10/19/2014, 6:41 AM

Tigers nab 'W' at Emporia -10/19/2014, 8:21 PM

Knights secure district, playoff spot -10/19/2014, 6:34 AM

TMP claims MCL tourney title -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

Monarchs take team to Class 4A state -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

Area prep football roundup, Oct. 17 -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

Indian volleyball second at WAC -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

HHS has high expectations for 4A golf finale -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

Buhler hands Hays High first loss in blowout -10/19/2014, 8:20 PM

FHSU men win eighth straight -10/18/2014, 8:21 PM

FHSU Tiger Open XC results -10/18/2014, 8:21 PM

Tiger women record third consecutive shutout -10/18/2014, 8:20 PM

Tiger volleyball wins third straight match -10/18/2014, 8:20 PM

Indians' Forinash goes 0-2 at 4A state -10/18/2014, 8:20 PM

TMP falls in district opener to Beloit -10/17/2014, 11:46 AM

HHS soccer falls to Bishop Carroll -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

FHSU men's soccer wins seventh straight -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

Tigers look to climb back above .500 -10/17/2014, 10:38 AM

HHS fourth in WAC meet -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

TMP boys 2nd, girls 3rd at Lakeside -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

TMP volleyball goes 2-0 in first day at MCL -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

Indians' Forinash in 4A state field -10/17/2014, 10:28 AM

Wichita State's Darius Carter shows off his jumper -10/17/2014, 10:27 AM

KVA prep volleyball rankings, Oct. 15 -10/16/2014, 10:31 AM

TMP drops close one to Liberal -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

TMP gets Beloit in district opener -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

K.C. headed to first World Series since 1985 -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

Selden ready to step into bigger role -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

Big district game for Hays High -10/16/2014, 10:31 AM

Area prep football district standings, Oct. 16 -10/16/2014, 10:11 AM

Royals sweep O's, headed to World Series -10/15/2014, 7:17 PM

Tigers fall in three -10/15/2014, 11:39 AM

Chiefs' Johnson sheds weight in hopes of return -10/15/2014, 10:13 AM

Giants win walk-off on throwing error in 10th -10/15/2014, 10:12 AM

Wildcat running backs looking to break out -10/15/2014, 10:12 AM

Royals one win from World Series -10/15/2014, 11:44 AM

Chiefs' Charles with eyes on the prize -10/14/2014, 10:14 AM

Parsons, Boxberger qualify in 3-2-1A golf -10/14/2014, 10:14 AM

Royals getting it done old school -10/14/2014, 10:14 AM

KSU prepares for OU -10/14/2014, 10:14 AM

HHS golf wins regional — TMP qualifies -10/13/2014, 6:11 PM

Rain postpones ALCS Game 3 -10/13/2014, 5:48 PM

Sports Scores

Tuesday

Prep basketball

Boys

Atwood 76, St. Francis 65

Dighton 62, Oberlin 47

Hillsboro 50, Goodland 47

Lakeside 42, Lincoln 32

Minneapolis 68, Russell 35

Rock Hills 42, Natoma 37

Salina Central 62, Andover 58

Salina South 62, Sacred Heart 47

Sharon Springs 75, Leoti 38

St. John's Beloit-Tipton 57, Osborne 34

Sylvan-Lucas 61, Thunder Ridge 48

Girls

Dighton 44, Atwood 11

Dodge City 71, Hays High 28

Hesston 51, Goodland 18

Hoisington 60, Victoria 46

Hoxie 65, St. Francis 13

Lincoln 33, Lakeside 26

Minneapolis 47, Otis-Bison 24

Osborne 59, Wilson 34

Sharon Springs 63, Oberlin 42

Sylvan-Lucas 43, Natoma 41 (ot)

Tescott 41, Rock Hills 33

Trego 56, Leoti 27

Thunder Ridge 33, St. John's Beloit-Tipton 30

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Tigers' Duran fills bigger role

Published on -2/19/2014, 10:16 AM

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By CONOR NICHOLL

cnicholl@dailynews.net

Paxton Duran was a strong No. 2 starter to first team All-American right-hander Maddie Holub on Fort Hays State University's 47-12 season last spring, the best year in school history.

Duran, a freshman right-hander, finished 15-7 with a 3.09 earned-run average in 30 appearances (25 starts) and 149.2 innings. Duran also carried a .266 batting average in 55 games.

However, Duran's numbers greatly improve if one subtracts five appearances from April 12 to 24. Duran went 1-2 with a 9.78 ERA in 19.1 innings. The rest of the season, she was 14-5 with a 2.09 ERA -- and with a strong finish and performance in the NCAA Division II tournament after the struggles.

"If you take those two weeks away, Paxton Duran had one heck of a freshman year," Tiger coach Erin Kinberger said.

Duran's numbers were better than Holub's freshman year (14-10, 3.56 ERA).

"As a freshman, I did well," Duran said. "Those two weeks I kind of lost it, but I am definitely working on my mental game a lot, and plan on that not happening."

A year later, Holub has graduated and is set to play professional softball in Italy. Duran has moved into the ace role and helped the Tigers open 5-1 at the 8-State Classic in Bentonville, Ark. last weekend.

"It's night and day," senior catcher Callie Wright said of Duran's difference from 2013 to '14. "Last year, as most freshmen do, they don't see their potential and seeing her now, we talk everyday about how excited we are to see her this season."

Duran went 3-0 with a 3.65 ERA in 15.1 innings with four appearances and two starts last week. Transfer Kelsey Kimminau filled the No. 2 slot with a 1-1 record and 2.55 ERA.

"She really hit just a little bit of a freshman bump, and that was more mental than physical," Kinberger said of Duran. "What I love about Paxton is she is aware of it, and she is not afraid to admit to it.

"An athlete who is aware and can admit it is a winner," she added. "You can really do things with athletes like that, and I can't wait to see what Paxton does this year. She is ready for the ball. She is hungry. I am excited."

Offensively, Duran went 1 of 4, but two newcomers, Rilee Krier (.500 average) and Kylie Strand (.474 average, 14 total bases) led the offense. FHSU is batting .335 this season.

This weekend, FHSU plays a doubleheader at Rockhurst (Mo.) University on Friday before the University of Minnesota-Duluth tournament with a tripleheader Sunday and two games Monday.

Two of the contests are against Minot State, who FHSU knocked out in the NCAA tournament last spring on a walk-off homer from Holub. More than anything, Duran learned composure from Holub, the Tiger school record holder in virtually every statistic.

"She was constantly the same whether we were winning by 10 runs or losing by a little bit," Duran said. "She was constantly ready, giving her all, doing what needs to be done to win the game."

Duran called her biggest improvement changing speeds. Duran carried a 2.05/1 strikeout to walk rate last season and opened with a 4/1 K/BB ratio this year.

"I didn't do a lot of that last year," Duran said. "I have worked really hard on making sure that I am coming with my changeup, my offspeed and just keep the batter guessing."

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