Both Girls and Boys Stay Undefeated
The only thing that seems able to stop the Sidney Lady Raider and Red Raider Basketball teams this season is the weather, which caused the postponement of their contests against North Platte on Saturday, January 13. The Raider teams each notched two more wins over the past week, with a pair of easy wins over Mitchell on Tuesday January 9, and big wins over rival Ogallala on Friday, January 12.
On Tuesday, the Raider teams hosted the Tigers, and the action began with the girls' contest. The Lady Raiders exploded with a 22-to-0 second quarter run to put away the Lady Tigers, and roll to their twelfth win of the season. The Lady Raider defense shut down the Mitchell girls' offense, forcing 33 turnovers while holding the Lady Tigers scoreless for much of the contest. The game ended in a 71-to-14 victory for Sidney, with senior Karsyn Leeling leading the scoring with 19 points.
It was a slightly different story in the boys' contest, with Sidney coming out of the gates slowly, but able to build a small lead. The teams battled through the first half, with Sidney holding a six-point edge at the intermission. Everything changed in the third quarter when the Raiders went on a 20-to-3 run, to put the game away. Sidney cruised through the rest of the second half and picked up the 61-to-34 victory. Four Red Raider players scored in double-digits, with sophomore Alec Doty leading the way, with 14 points.
On Friday, the Raider teams traveled to Ogallala, and the Lady Raiders opened the action against the Lady Indians. Again, the Lady Raider defense dictated the action, forcing 19 turnovers and holding the Ogallala girls to just 7 of 42 shooting on the night. Leeling again led the scoring in the 53-to-32 win, with 12 points in the victory, improving the The Lady Raiders record to 13-and-0.
The boys' game would be the biggest challenge for the Red Raider team thus far this season, and the Sidney boys passed the test with flying colors. Ogallala was ranked No. 2 in C1, with Sidney coming it at No. 10, prior to the contest, but Sidney's ranking would need some adjustment after the Red Raiders came away with the 68-to-60 win. It was the first time Ogallala lost a regular season game since February 4, 2022. Sidney would need to rally to take the win, as they trailed at the half, 34-to-27. A strong third period saw Sidney outscore Ogallala 21-to-8 and give them the lead, but the Ogallala boys had no quit in them and converted four three point shots to come back in the fourth quarter and tie the game 54-to-54. Both teams scored six points in overtime to force a second overtime. In the second overtime, Sidney held Ogallala scoreless, then buried six of ten free throws down the stretch to take the 68-to-60 win. Senior Isak Doty led the scoring for Sidney with 24 points. With the win, Sidney moves to 13-and-0 and moved up to No. 6 in the C1 Rankings, while Ogallala moved to 12-and-1, but remained at No. 2 in the C1 Rankings.
The teams were scheduled to host North Platte on Saturday, January 13, but the frigid temperatures and snow forced the postponement of the contest. Sidney's next contests will be against Gothenburg, in the annual "Throwback Games" in Sidney on Friday, January 19.