Veritas boys basketball suffers overtime loss in state championship game
photo by: Carter Gaskins
The Veritas boys basketball team came up just short, dropping a 80-68 overtime heartbreaker to Manhattan Chief during Saturday’s KCAA State Championship game in Wichita.
Veritas (14-9) was on the verge of capturing a state title, leading by 9 points with two minutes left in regulation before seniors Will Rau and Will Bartkoski ended up fouling out down the stretch. The Eagles weren’t able to recover, getting outscored 13-1 in overtime.
Facing a 17-16 hole after the opening period, Veritas took control of the game with a 24-point effort in the second quarter. Rau poured in a team-high 35 points on 15-of-21 shooting while also grabbing 10 rebounds, four steals and three assists in his final game at Veritas.
Bartkoski scored 12 points, and senior Brennan Clements scored 11 points. They both finished with six rebounds apiece.
The narrow loss came one day after the Eagles earned a 68-63 victory over Life Prep in the semifinals. Veritas jumped out to a 20-13 lead after the opening period before adding 22 points in the second quarter.
Life Prep made a push in the second half, starting with a 27-point outburst in the third quarter. Veritas was led by Rau, who finished with 22 points on 8-of-16 shooting. He also recorded six rebounds, six assists and six steals.
Three other players joined Rau in double figures. Bartkoski finished with 16 points, while junior Aden-Jay Baker and Clements ended up with 11 points apiece. Bartkoski led Veritas with seven rebounds in the semifinals.
Semifinals: Veritas 68, Life Prep 63
Life Prep 13 13 27 10 — 63
Veritas 20 22 14 12 — 68
Will Rau 22, Will Bartkoski 16, Jordan Donaldson 8, Aden-Jay Baker 11, Brennan Clements 11.
Finals: Manhattan Chief 80, Veritas 68
Veritas 16 24 18 9 OT 1 — 68
Manhattan 17 10 21 19 OT 13 — 80
Will Rau 35, Will Bartkoski 12, Jordan Donaldson 7, Aden-Jay Baker 2, Owen Welch 1, Brennan Clements 11.