A tough loss

syeagle@demo-mo.comMarch 1, 2013 

It was a disappointing end to the season for the Midway girls’ basketball team Feb. 23.

The No. 2 seeded Vikings faced No. 1 seeded North Platte in the Class 2, District 15 championship game at Lone Jack and went home with a 54-31 loss.

“It was a tough and ugly loss,” Midway head coach Chad Dean said. “I think that’s what I’m the most disappointed in. I can handle a loss to a team that beats you but when you beat yourself it’s hard to swallow.”

To get to the title game, the Vikings defeated Mid-Buchanan 37-23 in the first round Feb. 18 and took down Kansas City Lutheran 40-29 in semifinals Feb. 20.

The first quarter didn’t start out well for the Vikings as North Platte took an 18-4 advantage. In the second quarter, Midway picked up the defense a bit, keeping the Panthers to 11 points, but only scoring six themselves, all from senior Kathleen Yoakum. North Platte still led 29-10 at halftime.

In the third quarter, Midway started out with a basket each from sophomore Laine Mills and senior Cady Wright to make the score 29-14. But the Panthers retaliated with a 6-0 run.

The Vikings came back with a run of their own with scores by sophomore Mariah Keeney, Yoakum and Wright. North Platte put in three more baskets themselves, but Midway ended the quarter with a shot each from Keeney and junior Jodi Rhodes to make the score 40-24.

“We made mental mistakes throughout the game that kept us from being able to climb back into it,” Dean said. “I don’t want to take anything away from North Platte, they are a good team, but definitely a team that we can play with better than we did on Saturday. I just hate for our girls to end their season on that note.”

In the fourth quarter, the Panthers started things off with a 8-0 run to lead 48-24. After a basket by Rhodes, North Platte scored. Midway put in a basket and three-pointer from sophomore Emily Aksamit, but the Panthers sealed the deal with two more baskets.

Midway was led in scoring by Yoakum with eight points and Wright with six points. Aksamit had five points and Keeney had four points. Mills and Rhodes had three points each. Kylie Berry added one point.

The Vikings end the season with a 19-9 record and graduate seven seniors, Yoakum, Wright, Berry, Allie Hayes, Shelby Admire, Taylor Buck and Gabrielle Smith.

“I’m very proud of my girls,” Dean said. “I’m proud of my senior leaders. Cady Wright and Kathleen Yoakum have been four-year starters for me and will be very hard to replace. I’m proud of my underclassmen who stepped up and played huge roles for us. Emily Aksamit, Laine Mills, and Mariah Keeney, all sophomores, were a big part of our success as well. I am all ready looking forward to seeing what these girls are capable of over the next couple of years.”

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