CHANUTE — The Emporia High boys opened this year’s Ralph Miller Classic in fine form.
The Spartans pulled away in the second quarter and cruised to a 63-44 victory over Olathe North.
“It was probably the best game we’ve played all year,” EHS Head Boys Coach Beau Welch said. “I thought we shared it well offensively. Defensively, I thought we guarded well. We really just controlled the tempo of the game.”
It was Skyler Douglas who helped the Spartans set a pace in the opening quarter, with a trio of 3-point buckets as E-High carried a 1-point advantage into the second.
“(Douglas) really gave us a big boost and after the first quarter is when we kind of took off,” Welch said.
Defensively, EHS held the Eagles to single digits in two of the final three quarters.
“I thought our zone really affected them and it frustrated them,” Welch said. “They never really got going ... or really had any momentum.”
The game also provided the return for senior Charles Snyder, who missed all of last week with an illness. Though his shots were inconsistent throughout the night, he still finished with 21 points and a one-handed slam to finish the Spartan scoring on the night.
“It took him awhile to get going today,” Welch said. “For us to be good, we have to have all of our guys. It establishes the way we’re going to play.”
That full roster provided plenty of spark to the Spartans’ stride as they move into a semifinal battle with Andover Central on Friday night.
“I just want us to play the same way,” Welch said. “I thought we played about as well as we’ve played all year in this game and I just want to carry that in to tomorrow and keep the ball rolling.”
Tipoff against ACHS will be approximately 8 p.m. in Chanute.
ONHS 17 6 12 9 — 44
EHS 18 12 20 13 — 63
Emporia High: Douglas 22, Snyder 21, Hoyt 6, Baumgardner 6, Hines 6, Gilpin 2.