The Plainsmen Bring Home Hardware
The Laramie Plainsmen won the 4A Consolation Championship last Saturday with a 57-38 victory over the Rock Springs Tigers in Casper.
It capped a 2-1 weekend at the State Basketball Championships, and Laramie brought home a trophy for the first time since 2011.
Plainsmen head coach Ryan Puckett said the kids played hard.
“It came back to what I’ve tried to start, that ‘All Out’ mentality. It doesn’t matter what the score is; it doesn’t matter how your seasons gone; as long as you’re giving your all-out effort; nobody can take anything from you. We ended on a high note this season.”
Laramie was led by Nate Burman with 19 points and 11 rebounds for his first career double-double. Reid Baty added his second consecutive double-double of 10 points and 11 rebounds. Matt Moran added 10 points.
Moran said he wished they would have won the first, but it’s the best they could’ve done after that.
“I think we were all really motivated. We all really wanted to win, and we all wanted some hardware. After the loss, it was pretty disappointing, but we all decided we were going to try the best we could to at least get something out of it; we did pretty well, I thought.”
The Plainsmen utilized a 9-0 spurt at the start of the second half that put them in control. Andrew Garcia made a pair of 3-pointers, while Burman added one. It built the Laramie lead to 41-25. LHS extended their advantage to 22 points in the fourth quarter. They held Rock Springs to 13 total points in the second half.
Laramie shot 42 percent from the floor and held a 35-28 edge in rebounding.
Puckett said, “It’s a team game… the right guys stepped up.”
Rock Springs was held to 33 percent from the field, which included 22 percent in the second half. The Tigers finished with 20 turnovers. Demetrius Davenport scored nine points to lead the way.
In the first half, Jake Aadland hit a shot from just inside half-court for a 13-8 edge after the first quarter. In the second, LHS got up eight and led 32-25 at halftime.
This was only the second time all season that the Plainsmen won back-to-back games. The victory also marked a 46-point turnaround from their regular season meeting. Laramie lost at Rock Springs by 27 points, 66-39, on Jan. 15.
The Plainsmen finish their season with an overall record of 10-17.
Puckett added that his team stayed the course.
“There was peaks and valleys; some were bigger valleys than the others; some were really high peaks; they truly persevered through everything. It’s a testament to these guys. That shows their character.”
Laramie will return three starters and seven lettermen for next season.