By Mike Pilosof
Photo by Adam Shrimplin
Garden City, KS-Patrick Nee could only smile once he realized his opponent was running late to the game. Good thing for the second-year coach, he got the last laugh.
The Broncbusters shook off a near 20-minute delay to dish out 32 assists, breaking a 20-year old school record, Tahlik Chavez buried five 3s, and Garden City rolled past Colorado Military Academy 111-51 Friday night at Conestoga Arena. It was the Broncbusters 13th straight opening-night victory.
Not that anyone expected to this to be a close contest, but Garden City made this look way too easy. Sophomore Daishaun Woods nailed a 3-pointer from the wing, Steven Samuels splashed home a pair of free throws, Chavez drained a triple; then stole the ball from Damon Grahmel before coasting the other way for an uncontested layup that put the home squad up 10-3. Once the visitor's scored, the Broncbusters blitzed them with a 16-2 run, capped by Woods block on one end, and Darius Roden's powerful slam on the other. That was followed with an 18-0 surge where Garden City held Colorado Military without a point for nearly six minutes and without a field goal for almost 10. Traylynn Spencer then sent the home crowd into a frenzy, grabbing his own miss, and laying it up softly in the final seconds of the opening period to put the brown and gold up 53-18 at the intermission.
Not much changed in the second half.
Kaleb Favors got in the scoring act in the first 60 seconds, swishing a 3-pointer from the top of the key. Spencer then stretched the lead to 40 with an easy deuce inside. Garden City was up by as many as 65 in the second half.
The only real drama took place in the final seconds. Needing one assist to break the school record, Jonah Willits carved his named into the history books, firing a pass to Marquez Terry, who cut backdoor for a layup at the buzzer, putting the finishing touches on a 60-point route.
Naj Ashley-Emory poured in 16 points in just 19 minutes off the bench for Garden City. Mason Osborne had seven assists, and Darius Roden and Derrick Bryant combined for 25 points. In all, the Broncbuster bench outscored Colorado Military 60-7. As a team, Garden City shot 53 percent and was 12-of-37 from 3 (32 percent). They also won the battle on the glass (51-28).
Grahmel led the way for Colorado Military, scoring 24 points on 7-of-12 shooting. The rest of the team though combined to go 10-of-39 (25 percent).
Next up: Garden City at Lamar, Tues. Nov. 5-6:45 p.m. pregame; 7 p.m. tip on 99.9 FM; westernkansasnews.com/kwkr and KWKR mobile app