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Year after year, the Burlington Invitational has brought together some of the best teams in Eastern Kansas and this 22nd edition continued that level of excellence. The top four girls team presented a 29-3 record with the top four boys teams coming in with a 28-4 record.
The LadyCats matched up with Paola (8-0) in the opening round game and were defeated by the eventual tourney champion 62-42. Friday night saw the Ladys in a rematch with the Iola Fillies, a team they fell to 51-49 in the December tournament in Garnett. Burlington took the lead early and held off each Iola run to finish with a 58-43 victory. Regan Norton and Marlorie Wagner matched up for 16 points each to lead the LadyCats to the win. Saturday found the LadyCats taking on the Rossville Bulldogs in the 5th place slot of the tournament. A low scoring game that was tied at the half, 20-20, Burlington gained a nine point lead in the third and secured the win 45-41. Malorie Wagner was named to the all-tournament team for the LadyCats.
The Burlington and Sabetha boys teams both entered the tournament with 8-0 record and appeared to be on a path to meet in Saturdays championship tilt. Sabetha dispatched Santa Fe 61-29 and Burlington made short work of Rossville 75-32 in the opening round games Tuesday. A detour on the path occurred Friday when Sabetha fell to Labette Co 51-48 and Burlington fell to Rock Creek 59-57. The championship game saw Rock Creek defeat Labette Co 55-52 in their first BIT appearance. The WildCats fell to last years champion Sabetha 56-52 for fourth place. Grant Shell scored 28 points in the final game for the Cats and was named to the all-tournament team along with teammate Brady Nordstedt.
“Voice of the Cats”
Coming off of a 36 point win over Eureka last Tuesday night, the Burlington LadyCats were looking to roll over another TVL opponet, Neodesha, this week. The Bluestreaks must not have read the memo as they rode the hot shooting hand of Kelsey Potters’ 12 first quarter points to an 18-13 lead at the first break. The score tightened to a 22-19 halftime margin. Coach Gilmans halftime speech must have set the team on fire as they opened the quarter with an 11-0 run on their way to outscoring Neodesha 20-4 in the third and secured a 15 point win 49-34. Shelbie Emling led all scorers with 20 and Malorie Wagner hit double digits with 11 for the Cats.
You don’t get too many thunderstorms in Kansas during January. but it was raining 3 pointers for the WildCats Tuesday night. The Cats first five shots of the night were from beyond the three point line and they connected on 4 of 5 to lead 18-13 at the break. That worked so well that they hit another 4 from beyond the arc to race to a 44-23 halftime lead. Burlington added five more treys in the second half for a total of 13 from 7 different players to take an 81-32 win over the Streaks. All 12 Cats scored with Hatch (10), Nordstedt (11), Shell (14), and Whitworth (16) in double figures.
The 22nd Annual Burlington Invitational tips off Tuesday night with one of the strongest fields in recent years. The top four girls teams have a combined record of 29-3 with the top four boys records 28-4. The LadyCats match up with undefeated 8-0 Paola at 6:40 in the high school gym with the undefeated WildCats taking on 3-6 Rossville at 8:15.
“Voice of the Cats”
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