YODER – The Southeast High School boys’ basketball team trailed much of the Thursday night’s game against Lingle-Fort Laramie, but the Cyclones took their first lead of the game early in the fourth quarter to ultimately knock off the Doggers, 42-39.
LFL jumped out to an 8-2 lead in the first two and a half minutes of the game, but late in the first quarter, senior Kirk Kay tied the game at eight apiece.
However, Southeast never saw the lead as the Doggers kept the Cyclones at bay.
“It was exciting back-and-forth. We jumped out to a lead early, and when we were scoring, it was basically off fast breaks and a little bit of defense right in front of their rim,” LFL coach Steve Zimmerman said. “Offensively, we are still struggling to get through a complete offense.”
The game was tied one occasion, and the Doggers were able to extend their lead to as many as 26-20 midway through the third quarter.
That’s when Southeast began its comeback.
“We started out early in a man-to-man and went into a different defense, and that was the key,” Southeast assistant coach Cody Powell said. “We were able to find Lingle’s weakness and find out where they couldn’t run an offense well. The boys did a nice job of being able to rotate on defense and play help side.”
With 6:34 left in the game, Southeast senior Jake Kramer’s 3-pointer gave the Cyclones a 31-29 lead, their first of the evening.
“The boys came out with a little bit of pride, were able to execute things, play our game and be able to run what we know what to run,” Powell said.
Southeast’s lead grew to as many as 37-31 with four minutes left to play, but the Doggers had one more run of their own.
With 1:05 remaining, sophomore Aidan Mattheus gave LFL a 39-38 lead, but with 15 seconds left, Southeast freshman Ayden Desmond slipped past the Dogger defense for a layup, adding the free throw to put Southeast back in front.
“At the end of the game, we missed, rotated, and they got a short little shot to win the game,” Zimmerman said.
Desmond added one more free throw with one second left on the clock to seal the victory.
“Very impressed with Aiden Desmond,” Powell said. “He did a really nice job of being able to drop that last play with this big game on the line as a freshman. He was able to execute and perform for us.”
Short led Southeast with 12 points, while Desmond added eight.
Freshman Brody Roberts led LFL with 13 points, while freshman Kaiden Riggs had nine.
Southeast falls at Pine Bluffs
The next day, the Cyclones traveled to Pine Bluffs, and the Hornets defeated Southeast 59-33.
The Cyclones only mustered two first-quarter points as the home team pulled away quickly 17-2.
Pine Bluffs outscored Southeast 19-10 in the second, but the teams played even over the course of the final 16 minutes of the game.
No Southeast stats were available at press time.
The Cyclones travel to Mitchell, Nebraska on Friday.