It was a week jam-packed of local basketball as the Archie Whirlwinds hosted their annual basketball tournament for the 93rd consecutive year. The tournament saw 9 different area schools competing for the championship this year. Local teams competing included Butler, Drexel, Hume, Rich Hill, Adrian, Archie, Harrisonville, among others.
Notre Dame de Sion came into the girls side of the bracket as the top seed and was able to come out victorious against the 8 seed, Midway Vikings. Followed by Archie defeating Rich Hill, Harrisonville beating Butler, and the 6 seed Drexel Bobcats upsetting the Hume Hornets who came into the tournament with a 3 seed and having a great season thus far.
In the second round, on the winners half of the bracket, Notre Dame de Sion advanced to the Championship with a victory over Archie, and Harrisonville would squeak by Drexel for a chance at the trophy as well. The 3rd place game saw the Drexel Bobcats defeat the Whirlwinds. On the opposite side of the bracket, the Hume Hornets defeated the Rich Hill Tigers to claim the 5th place hardware, while Midway defeated Butler to take home the 7th place title.
All of that action set the scene for Championship Saturday where the Notre Dame de Sion Storm prepared to face-off against the Harrisonville Wildcats. This was a highly anticipated 1-2 match-up that did not disappoint. After 8 minutes of play, Notre Dame led the Wildcats 15-11. The Wildcats would outscore the Storm in the 2nd quarter and go into the break trailing by only 2 with 27-25 showing on the scoreboard. Notre Dame however, would come out and double up the Wildcats during an explosive 3rd quarter which led to Harrisonville trailing by 10 going into the final quarter. This deficit proved too much for the Wildcats to handle, and the Storm would wrap up the tournament with a 63-47 victory and take home the title of Champions. Harrisonville’s Madison Riggs would put a valiant effort in the loss and end the game with 21 points and 6 rebounds on 7-13 shooting from the floor. But Grace Carlson of the Storm was just too much for the Wildcats to handle as she ended the game with 30 points, 7 steals, and 4 rebounds on 9-14 shooting from the field and 11-12 from the charity stripe.
The All-Tournament team for the Ladies was compiled of the following: Junior Grace Carlson of Midway, Senior Kendra Riggs of Harrisonville, Senior Madison Johnson from Harrisonville, Junior Brecklen Morrison of Hume, Senior Keara Mattingley from Archie, and Senior Emily Wheeler of Drexel.
The first round of the men’s action, saw the #1 seed, Harrisonville Wildcats handle the #8 seed Hume Hornets, followed by a couple of upsets in the middle of the bracket as the 5 seed Adrian Blackhawks defeated the 4 seed Rich Hill Tigers, and the 6 seed Drexel Bobcats took down the 3 seed Butler Bears. The 2 seed Archie Whirlwinds took care of business against the Midway Vikings to complete the first round of play.
On the consolation side of things, Butler would end up winning against the Rich Hill Tigers to finish in 5th place, while the Midway Vikings would defeat Hume for the 7th spot. Adrian faced off against Drexel for the third place game, the Blackhawks were able to come out on top of a very talented Drexel team to take home the 3rd place trophy.
The final game of the tournament saw the 1 seed Harrisonville Wildcats take on the 2 seed Archie Whirlwinds for a chance to hoist the trophy. After a tightly contested opening quarter, the Whirlwinds would cling to a one point advantage with a score of 14-13. At the intermission the Whirlwinds would continue to get the better of the match up, leading 28-22. However, the Wildcats would make the proper adjustments in the locker room and come out and cut into the lead outscoring Archie 12-7 in the 3rd and making it a 35-34 game going into the 4th. It was a tale of two halves, as the Wildcats would continue their run in the 4th and outscore the Whirlwinds 18-10 in the final period to claim a 52-45 win and emerge Champions as the final buzzer sounded. Briar McIntire of Archie would lead all scoring in the Whirlwinds losing effort, tallying up 18 points, while Eli Baker of the Wildcats led Harrisonville with 16 points, helped out by Alex Bullcok with 15 points and Mason Mitchell with 12 points.
To wrap up the night, a couple of awards were given out, as the Rich Hill Tigers were handed the Bob Bure Sportsmanship Award and the Men’s All-Tournament was announced, and the following players made the cut: Senior Alex Bullock of Harrisonville, Sophomore Eli Baker of Harrisonville, Senior Jojo Mitchell of Drexel, Junior Colin Kramer of Adrian, Junior Briar McIntire of Archie, and Senior Brunson Tenholder of Archie. Editors addition to this list include: Senior Magal Chol-Case of Rich Hill who compiled a double against Butler scoring 10 points and grabbing 11 rebounds in the Tigers loss to Butler, as well as a couple of other impressive games throughout the tournament. Junior Carter Trumbore of Butler who averaged 25.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, 3 steals, and 2.3 assists for the tournament.
In other area sports, Senior Brendin Patrick broke the Butler wrestling win record with his 161st win in only 165 matches.