BUFFALO - In determining state bids at the basketball regional tournaments, sometimes its not who you beat, itís what round you beat them in. The Bulldog Boysí hoops team was playing its best basketball of the year heading to the 3A East Regional Tournament in Buffalo this past weekend.
In their opening game, the Dawgs would take on the #2 seeded Rawlins Outlaws. Wheatland would dominate the game start to finish following a 5-point loss to Rawlins last week.
After opening the first minutes up 11-1, the Outlaws would never get closer than 9 points for the remainder of the game with tremendous ball pressure from Wheatland guards Zac Gunter, Brody West and Chase Cochran. Josh Madsen would lead the Bulldogs with 6 rebounds and his season high 19 points. Clayton Iacovetto would add nine, Brody West 8 and Trigg Peasley with 7 to balance the scoring.
The Bulldogs would cruise to a 49-26 victory.
On Saturday, the Bulldogs would take on the 19-4 and #1 seeded Douglas Bearcats. After losing by over 30 points earlier this season to the Bearcats, the Bulldogs would give the top seeded Bearcats a scare, closing the game to a 5 points margin midway through the 4th quarter. After missing key shots down the final minutes, the Bulldogs would be forced to foul and drop the game 42-57. Brody West would lead the Bulldogs again with 22 points, going 6 for 11 from 3-point range.
In the loser-out game Saturday, the Bulldogs would face the #2 seeded Torrington Trailblazers, who were upset in round 1 by the Buffalo Bison.
Wheatland had struggled during the season against the Blazers going 0-2. The Bulldogs would have trouble finding shots in the first quarter and fall behind 17-3 to the streaking Blazers. Wheatland would close the score to 11 at the end of the third quarter. In a fourth quarter that showed a lot of toughness and grit, the Bulldogs would battle back to tie the score at 46-46 on a Brody West layup with 56 seconds left. This brought a very a pro-Bulldog regional crowd to their feet. The Blazers would wind down the clock and score on a 15-foot jumper by Tyler Ring with 2 seconds left to let the air out of the gym. Wheatland would fall short on a last second 3 pointer and miss the state tournament for the first time in 8 years losing 48-46. Chase Cochran would finish his senior year with a career-high 12 points. Brody West put in 15 points and Josh Madsen would pull down 9 rebounds. After manhandling the Outlaws Thursday, the Bulldogs would have to suffer through watching Rawlins qualify for state after defeating 2 lower ranked teams than Wheatland had to face. Senior Brody West led the team this season in scoring (15.7/game, #5 in 3A ), steals (3.1/game, #4 in 3A) and assists (2.7/game). Josh Madsen led the team in rebounds (7/game, #4 in 3A ) and was second on the team in assists. The Bulldogs return 2 starters next year, Trigg Peasley who was the teamís second leading scorer (9.3/game), rebounder (4.8/game) and led the team in blocked shots and 3 point FG percentage (39%, #4 in 3A) and Clayton Iacovetto who was the teamís leading FG percentage shooter (54%, #5 in 3A). The Bulldogs also return varsity contributors Jamison Brown, Braydon Billings, Zac Gunter , Cole Adams, Joey Madsen and Trevor Vaughn.
For the complete article see the 03-08-2017 issue.
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