Lawrence Free State hit three free throws with 2.9 seconds remaining in the first half to open up a seven point lead over Junction City at the break. In the third quarter the Firebirds outscored the Blue Jays 20-10 and moved on to a 67-45 win in the first round of the McPherson Invitational.
Lawrence Free State shot 51% from the field in the game compared to 32% for the Blue Jays. Junction City coach Nick Perez noted the Firebirds shot the ball extremely well. I thought we did a great job in the first half of controlling the tempo, closing out with our hands up and rebounding. Second half they started to do some things, get in the paint, we just didn’t play very good defense in the second half. McDermott got going, Luinstra got going and all of a sudden their team gets going.” Zach
McDermott finished with 14 points and Garrett Luinstra 24 for Lawrence Free State. A.J. Dickerson led Junction City with 17 points.
The Blue Jays meet Derby in the consolation semifinal round of the tournament at 3 p.m. Friday. Lawrence Free State advances to play Wichita Bishop Carroll in the winner’s bracket at 6:45 p.m. Friday. The tournament continues through Saturday.