By TYLER HENRY
Lead Sportswriter - Salina Post
On Tuesday night, Minneapolis and Ellsworth played to a league split on our Salina Regional Orthopedic and Sports Medicine Game of the Week.
Girls Game: Minneapolis 54, Ellsworth 31
The Lady Lions patented pressure was on full display in this game, as Minneapolis forced the issue the length of the court for the better part of 32 minutes, turning Ellsworth over 22 times.
Those turnovers led to big buckets in transition and allowed Minneapolis to slowly but surely pull away, leading by five after the first, eight at the half, and 11 going into the fourth.
The Lady Lions also flexed their range in this game, as Josi Schrader and Braedee Weatherman rained down triples to help extend the lead in the first half.
Free throws would be another big boost for Minneapolis, with the Lady Lions knocking down 17 of their 24 attempts while sending Ellsworth to the line just eight times.
When all was said and done, Minneapolis had three different players in double figures, led by Weatherman (16), Maci McClure (13), and Maggie Shupe, who got six of her ten points from the line.
With this result, Minneapolis takes over second place in the NCAA at 5-2 while Ellsworth falls to 1-6
Boys Game: #5 Ellsworth 39, Minneapolis 30
On the boy’s side, this game was more of a dogfight than anyone could have anticipated, as the 3-12 Lions gave the 5th-ranked Bearcats everything they could handle.
Minneapolis packed the inside, forcing Ellsworth to settle for outside jumpers and taking away their ability to drive to the rim.
More impressively, the Lions held Will Cravens to just two first-half buckets, both on putbacks and lead Ellsworth 22-15 at the intermission.
Unfortunately for Minneapolis, their offense went ice cold after the break, scoring just eight second-half points as the Bearcats slowly but surely came back to claim the 39-30 victory.
Cravens would lead all scorers with 13 points, aided in the effort by Layton Leiker (12), and Riley Stone (8), and spoiling a strong performance from Minneapolis’ Owen Just (13).
With this result, Ellsworth pulls even with Sacred Heart in the league standings at 5-2 while the Lions fall to 1-6.