McPherson Gabe Patterson’s three-point play gave Free State the lead, and the Firebirds held on for a 52-50 high school boys basketball victory over Buhler on Thursday in the McPherson Invitational.
The Firebirds ended a seven-game losing streak and earned a spot in the semifinals at 6:30 tonight against Blue Valley West.
Free State built a 12-point lead midway throught the third quarter, but Buhler fought back to take a one-point edge with less than two minutes remaining. Patterson’s traditional three-point play gave the Firebirds a 52-50 lead with a little more than one minute left. Buhler held the ball the rest of the way but misfired on a 28-foot shot just before the final buzzer.
“We lost seven games in a row, so we’ll take a win however we can get it,” Free State coach Chuck Law said. “Hopefully this win will springboard us into something productive tomorrow night.”
Cole Moreano and Brett Frantz scored 15 points apiece for Free State (3-7). Frantz also totaled five rebounds and four assists. Patterson contributed 11 points and six rebounds.
“I would compliment our overall team defense,” Law said. “It feels great to get back in the win column. Our kids needed it. This is a fun place for us to come out and play. The kids who’ve never been here before were very impressed.”