By Ryan Kaczmarski
It was a big weekend for the Lutheran West boys varsity basketball team, as the Longhorns grabbed two wins, after suffering their only two losses of the season, and stay tied atop of the Patriot Athletic Conference Stripes Division with Columbia.
The first win came against conference foe Buckeye High School, 65-50, Friday night. The Longhorns used defensive pressure, both half- and full-court, to force 18 first half turnovers and break the Bucks’ 10-game winning streak.
Lutheran West was led by senior forward Greg Kunze, who finished the game with 28 points and six rebounds. Kunze scored 17 points in the first quarter alone, including sinking five of his game high six 3-pointers, and two free throws, to put the Longhorns up 21-9 at the end of one.
The Longhorns went up 37-22 at the half, before cruising to the 65-50 final, and had 11 players make the score book, including Max Quinn, who scored 11 points in the victory.
Buckeye went 18-42 from the field, for 43 percent, while Lutheran West shot 21-43, for 49 percent. Buckeye did lead in the turnover column, 27-21.
In Saturday night’s non-conference matchup at Open Door, Lutheran West (10-2, 7-1 in the PAC Stripes Division) stormed out to a 18-0 lead in the first quarter and never looked back, winning in a rout, 49-35.
The Longhorns again played great defense, forcing Open Door to commit 28 turnovers and keeping the Patriots to 26 percent shooting.
Leading the way for the Longhorns were Kunze and Andrew O’Hara, who each scored 11 points. O’Hara also grabbed nine rebounds in the victory.
It was the second time this season the Longhorns played back-to-back games. Lutheran West is 4-0 in those games.
Lutheran West took off to a 6-0 record this season, before falling to Columbia and Gilmour Academy. The Longhorns host Brookside High School in a PAC crossover game on Friday, with tip-off set for 7:30 p.m.