This past week, the Cassville Wildcats had only one game on the road. Cassville travelled to East Newton last Friday and fell 46-38.
In the first half, Cassville was stymied, only scoring 8 points to East Newton's 24. The Wildcats got it together in the second two quarters but it was too little too late, and Cassville lost 38-46.
The Wildcats were led by senior Cody Ricklefs and sophomore Kelby Haynes. Ricklefs tallied 9 points, three rebounds, two assists and two steals, and Haynes contributed 9 points, nine rebounds, one assist and three steals.
Brian Elkins got into foul trouble early on and was limited to 7 points. He also added 10 rebounds, two assists and two steals.
Other notables were: Brett Buchanan with 6 points, three rebounds, one assist and one steal; Tim Orrell with 5 points, four rebounds, one assist and two steals; Scott Fitzpatrick with 2 points and three rebounds; and Chris Born with one rebound.
With the loss, the Wildcats fell to 8-15 on the year and 0-5 in Big 8 Conference play. The Wildcats look to change their luck this week with games against Monett and Seneca.
On Friday when Cassville plays host to the Indians, the Wildcats' three seniors and their will be honored before the start of the varsity game. Scott Fitzpatrick, Cody Ricklefs and Brett Buchanan will all be recognized as will Cricket Miller and Savannah Miller, the two senior members of the CHS cheerleading squad.
The Wildcats will begin district play at Aurora on Tuesday, Feb. 21. Fourth-seeded Cassville will take on fifth-seeded Reeds Spring at 6 p.m. The winner of that game will advance to play first-seeded Ozark on Friday, Feb. 24 at 6 p.m. The championship game will be held on Saturday, Feb. 25 at 7:30 p.m.
The Cassville junior varsity boys, coached by Jeremy Faubion, have faced three opponents in the last two weeks.
On Jan. 31, the Wildcats faced McDonald County. This game was not pretty at all, especially on the offensive end. The Mustang zone confused the Wildcats into poor shot selection, lack of execution and too many turnovers. Positives on the night was the Wildcat defense.
A run in the third quarter put the Wildcats on top by three points heading into the fourth quarter. The shots would not fall for Cassville, and McDonald County tied the ball game heading into the final 15 seconds of the game. The Mustangs, despite good defense, hit a tough turn-around shot just before the buzzer, clearing the way for a 26-24 victory for the visitors.
Scoring for Cassville: Jody Cavness 2, Clint Reed 11, Corey Howard 1, Ryan Schlichtman 2, Marcus Hitchcock 6 and Dannon Rose 2.
The young 'Cats looked to right the ship as they next traveled to Hollister. The Wildcats came out with a 20-point first quarter and never looked back. Cassville played exceptional defense, which led to easy buckets on the other end, a final 51-2 victory.
Schlichtman led the way with a season high of 17 points. Howard and Rose also hit double figures on the night, scoring 10 and 11 respectively. Other scorers were: Cavness 4, Reed 8 and Hitchcock 1.
The next game was a tale of two halves, as the Wildcats came out and played a pretty solid first half. Good defense led to this, as the Wildcats only allowed 16 points.
However, the second half was another story, in particular the fourth quarter. East Newton started being very aggressive on the offensive end, and the Wildcat defensive response was not up the the challenge at that time.
The Wildcat lead began to dwindle toward the end of the game, but the Wildcats held on in the last 30 seconds to end the Patriot comeback. East Newton hit a shot at the buzzer to cut the lead down to a one point Wildcat victory by the score of 45-44. Scoring for the Wildcats: Cavness 4, Reed 8, Chris Born 5, Howard 8, Schlichtman 7, Hitchcock 9 and Rose 3.
The Wildcat JV record stands at 14-3 on the season. with two games left.