By Mike Pilosof
Photos by Adam Shrimplin
Garden City, KS-In one of their final tune-ups before a challenging non-conference stretch, Garden City put on an impressive offensive display on Wednesday night.
Cheihk Kebe scored 19 points in 22 minutes off the bench, Jamir Thomas added 16, seven rebounds and five assists, and Garden City demolished Sterling College 93-52 at Conestoga Arena.
"I feel like we're slowly getting there," Nee said. "We just try to improve each and every time we go out there."
The Broncbusters shot 59 percent from the field and totaled 25 assists on 36 made baskets. It was their second straight game with 20 or more dimes.
"Guys are still trying to get a rhythm with one another," Nee said. "But they've been on the same page so far."
That continuity was in full flight on Wednesday. Garden City (3-0) had three dunks in the first 3:30 of the game, none more powerful than Jamir Thomas's rebound and coast-to-coast slam that put the Broncbusters up 8-3. After Nate Heneha split a pair of free throws for Sterling, Garden City answered with an 18-0 run, punctuated by Jakobi Pearson's triple that made it 26-4 with 10:41 to play in the half.
"There are always things that we can correct," Nee said. "The good thing about these games is that we get a lot of guys playing time."
While the offense was cooking, the defense put the clamps down, holding the Warriors to just four points over a 12-minute stretch. Garden City led 57-21 at the break.
The starters didn't play much in the second half, although they did have a few highlights. Russhard Cruickshank buried a 3-pointer to begin the period, and Thomas nailed a turnaround jump shot to stretch the lead to 41. It grew to 54 when Steven Samuels threw down a vicious two-handed slam.
"I'm not necessarily pleased with how we closed the game," Nee said. "That shouldn't have happened.
Garden City held Sterling to just 24 points over the first 28 minutes of the game. They allowed 24 over the final 12 minutes and six 3's.
"We have to be better than that," Nee added.
Pearson scored 12 points off the bench for Garden City, and Daishuan Woods had 12 on 4-of-5 shooting in 18 minutes. Cruickshank had 10 points and four assists.
Heneha was the lone Warrior in double figures with 11 points but was just 3-of-10 from the field.
Tip ins: The Broncbusters outscored Sterling 58-14 in the paint and outrebounded them 43-14. Their bench produced 59 points.
Next up: Garden City vs. Spring Creek Academy-Sunday, Nov. 11-12:45 p.m. pregame; 1 p.m. tip on 99.9 FM; westernkansasnews.com/kwkr and KWKR mobile app