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TMP cold early, falls to Hoisington

By TYLER PARKS

sports@dailynews.net

HOISINGTON -- The Thomas More Prep-Marian boys' basketball team's effort Tuesday in its loss to the Hoisington Cardinals was "lackluster," said head coach Joe Hertel.

TMP lost 69-56 to the Cardinals in their last conference game of the season at the Hoisington Activities Center.

Hoisington (15-3, 5-0 MCAA) came out firing on all cylinders, scoring 23 points in the first quarter to jump out to a 14-point advantage.

"You just can't dig yourself into a hole like that all the time," Hertel said. "I was disappointed how my team came to the gym tonight. Their body language showed doubt all over. I think the way we played early showed that."

TMP (6-11, 3-3 MCAA) started the game slow, scoring just nine points in the opening quarter, hitting 4 of 14 from the floor.

"Our defense I thought was pretty solid other than giving some shots up on the backside in the first half," said Hoisington head coach Kyle Haxton.

The Monarchs finished the night with a 33-percent field goal percentage.

"The first quarter we played great basketball," Haxton said. "Everything we did had a rhythm and flow to it, it wasn't the knockdown drag out it usually is with a Hoisington TMP matchup."

TMP needed an 8-2 run in the middle of the second quarter to cut the lead to 11 by halftime.

"We basically played a second quarter almost emotionless, no enthusiasm and consequently you get down into a deep hole at halftime, and it is difficult to come back," Hertel said.

The troubles continued for TMP in the third. At one point early in the quarter, TMP already had committed nine fouls to Hoisington's two.

Hoisington used it to gain a 19-point advantage.

"When you go six or eight trips, and don't make any points it is hard to stay with a team that has a player like Cody Stetler," Hertel said.

TMP, however, continued to battle, and even with the Monarchs on the cusp of double bonus, the lead stayed at 11 for the Cardinals to end the third.

"We tried to mixing some things up in the second half, running a little action and zone, and we did not have the success we wanted to have," Haxton said.

TMP senior Tanner Unrein came out on fire to start the fourth, scoring all five of his points unanswered within the first two minutes to cut the lead to six.

"All we have to do is hang fairly close, and I know we will make a run just like we did at home, just like we did tonight," Hertel said. "We don't have the firepower to crawl back against a team like Hoisington after you get down so far."

That was the closest TMP got to the Cardinals.

Stetler had another big night with a team-high 30 points and 14 rebounds.

TMP played a zone to pack it in on the 6-foot-8 Stetler, but fouls hurt the Monarchs throughout the game. Stetler drew five fouls on the night and scored nine points at the free throw line.

TMP finished with 26 fouls. Two Monarchs fouled out and four more had at least three fouls. Sophomore Cameron Fouts and junior Jordan Gottschalk both fouled out as they were faced with the task of double-teaming Stetler.

By the end of the night the defense had become so timid they allowed five straight Stetler baskets with little or no defense on him to end the game.

Hoisington freshman Jacob Warnken also finished in double digits with 11 points on 3-of-7 shooting from the field.

"Jacob shot the ball well. We expect Cody to have those 30-point nights. He has been flat out dominant in the interior, and he was tonight," Haxton said. "He completely controlled the game on the defensive end with blocked shots and rebounds."

Senior Kade Megaffin led the Monarchs with 15 points. He also added six rebounds.

"We needed somebody to score for us because we struggled to get anything going early," Hertel said of Megaffin.

"It is disappointing particularly on the heels of a real character game at Scott City last week. Even though we got beat against Scott City, we still battled hard and I didn't see that tonight."

TMP plays Plainville Friday night at Al Billinger Fieldhouse.