Head Coach Mike Curry said that it wasn't their best game of the year, but the Gillette Camels (23-2) were still able to advance to the 4A State Semifinals with a dominating 67-23 win over Rock Springs (11-16) at Casper College Thursday night.
Coming into the game Coach Curry knew how important it would be to control the defensive glass and limit 2nd chance points for his team to be successful and the Camels did just that as they outrebounded the Tigers 42-33, including 18-11 in the 2nd half. The Camels had 16 2nd chance points compared to just 4 for Rock Springs.
The Camels struggled a bit taking care of the ball in the 1st half as they turned it over 10 times, but then didn't commit a single turnover in the 2nd half. Meanwhile the Tigers were forced into 26 turnovers, 12 more than their season average coming into the state tourney. Gillette also had 16 steals, which was their 2nd highest total of the season. The Camels were able to take advantage of the Tigers miscues as they scored 29 points of turnovers, while Rock Springs didn't score a single point that way.
Gillette gave up a season low 23 points as the Tigers didn't score more than 7 points in any quarter. The Camels led 11-7 at the end of 1, it was 29-13 going I to halftime and they just building on their lead from there. The Camels had their biggest quarter in the 3rd quarter as they used a 22-6 advantage to run away from Rock Springs.
Cody Kelley scored a game high 15 points, but it was Dylan Haddix who filled up the stat sheet with 8 points, 10 rebounds, 3 blocks and a game high 5 steals all while staying out of foul trouble.
On top of Kelley's 15 points he also had 6 rebounds, 3 assists and 4 steals. Michael Cook was stellar on both ends of the floor as he chipped 7 points, all in the 2nd half and he 5 rebounds, 3 blocks, 3 steals and 2 assists.
Everybody who suited up for Gillette played and 10 different players scored in the their opening round win as Logan Wasson had 11 points, including shooting 3 of 5 from downtown. Thomas Bush contributed 8 points, Bryce Lyman had 6, Tanner Rogen 4, Tanner Sandvick and Cale Miessler each had 3 while Seth Moerkerke had 2.
The Tigers were led by Zack Legerski as he finished with 5 points. Jordan Rood, Sean Willmore and Braxton Rossette each had 4 points. Kellyn Goodrich hit a late 3-pointer for his lone points of the game. Lennon Spence chipped in 2 points while Wrylee Padilla had 1 point.
Next up for Gillette will be a rematch with Riverton, who they beat 83-54 back on December 14th at the Flaming Gorge Classic in Green River. The 2nd 4A State Semifinal will tip off on Friday at 9pm from the Casper Events Center and you can hear the game on 97.3 KAML FM and online at www.netwprk1sports.com/station/kaml
In the other 4A semifinal it'll be Kelly Walsh, who hung on to beat Cheyenne Central 29-26 against Evanston, who upset Laramie 64-54 in OT. This game will tip off at 7:30pm.
For complete results and stats from the 3A and 4A State Tournament go to www.whsaa.org