Wearing their road whites, the Potter County Battlers made their final appearance of the State B tournament on Saturday afternoon against the Arlington Cardinals playing for seventh place.
Tanner Heuer, number 12 for the Battlers (not to be confused with number 12 for the other team, whose last name was also Heuer) got the first bucket of the game which was quickly answered by the Cards. It didn’t take long for Potter County to put a little distance in the score. The quarter ended with the Battlers on top, 17-11.
The game got a little more physical during the second quarter of play, with both teams stopping by the free throw line. The score spread, giving the Potter County team a 10 point lead halfway through the period. Kole Hawkinson swished a pretty three pointer with two minutes to play in the half, and the
teams went into the locker room with the Battlers on top, keeping the spread at 10 with the score 34-24.
The second half got underway and Arlington tightened the score within four point just three minutes into the third quarter. When the Cardinals got a little too close to their basket, Chayce Hall broke loose with a nice steal and quick
layup to make sure there was still a comfortable spread. Hawkinson netted another three point shot, putting him one away from the State B tournament record. The Cards took the last minute of play to steal the ball two times and tighten the score to four points. The clock ran out in the third quarter with the Battlers up 46-42.
The Mighty Potter County Battlers started their final eight minutes of basketball for their incredible 2013 season. With 6:25 left in the game, Hawkinson hit his 13th three pointer in Aberdeen this week and tied the State B tournament record set in 1992. With a minute and a half left to go in the game, there were only four points between the teams. Hawkinson spent most of his final minutes shooting free throws for the Battlers, where he added points to the board one at a time and had 29 points for the afternoon.
After a review of the stats, it turned out that Hawkinson had not been credited for a fourth three pointer in the first game of the tourney, and actually did break the record with 14 of the shots!
The buzzer ended the game with the Battlers winning 72-62 and bringing home seventh place after an outstanding year!
Congratulations to all the Mighty Battlers from Potter County, Coaches Bryce Hall and Tim Hagedorn, and all the stats, fans, and support groups!
By Molly McRoberts