By Kai Raymer
Barstow’s Jacob Gilyard made the 2.5-hour trip to Springfield, set a single-game record for points and denied the hometown team a Missouri Challenge sweep.
The Richmond University commit, a lightning-quick 5’8” point guard, dropped a tournament-record 50 points in the title game of the Missouri Challenge on Sunday afternoon as Kansas City defeated Southwest 112-101 at Drury’s O’Reilly Family Event Center.
Gilyard was efficient in shredding Southwest’s defense. He made 17 of 25 field goal attempts, including four of nine 3-point tries, and was also 12-for-13 at the free throw line. He scored 29 of his 50 points in the second half to help Kansas City overcame a sizable first-half deficit.
“Honestly, I hadn’t heard of (Gilyard) until today,” said Nixa’s Christian Bundy, who had 18 points and six rebounds. “They said he averaged 33 points per game and I was like, ‘Oh.’ He came out here and dropped 50. He’s the real deal.”
The outcome spelled a bittersweet end to a memorable weekend for Kickapoo’s Jared Ridder, who’s headed to play at Xavier University.
On Saturday night at the Missouri Basketball Coaches Associations awards’ banquet, Ridder was honored as Mr. Show-Me Basketball for the 2016-17 season.
“I was looking at the list (of previous winners) before the banquet and I was just saying ‘Wow’ at some of the names on there,” Ridder said. “Jayson Tatum, Spencer Laurie and players like that. It was a huge honor. I’ve been working hard since middle school and it’s been my dream to receive awards like that.”
Ridder had a double-double for Southwest with 23 points and 10 rebounds. His four-point play midway through the first half put Southwest ahead 29-14.
Kickapoo teammate Cam Davis (Navy) added 19 points, Bundy scored 18 and Brandon Emmert (Central Missouri) finished with 14 points.
Bundy sparked a late Southwest rally, scoring six straight points via a three-point play dunk and a 3-pointer. The latter brought Southwest within 94-93 with about three minutes remaining, but Kansas City never gave up the lead.
Bundy recently committed to Division II Missouri Southern State University in Joplin and said consistent shooting will be a necessity at the next level.
“I’ve been working on my shooting,” Bundy said. “With Nixa, I’m in the low post. I’ll need to (develop) my shot in college. I’m only 6’5”. There’s a lot of bigger guys at that level.”
Bradley commit Elijah Childs had 14 points and 12 rebounds for Kansas City.
Southwest shot 36-for-83 from the field (compared to 42-for-78 by KC), was 10-for-34 on 3-point attempts and went 19-for-28 at the free throw line. Kansas City outscored Southwest 61-46 in the second half.
Despite the loss, the Southwest group enjoyed a weekend of playing together on the same teams – after years of numerous games against one another on the preps level.
“It was fun getting to play with friends like that,” Ridder said. “It was good getting to play with them one last time before we leave for college and I had a lot of fun.”
Kansas City 112, Southwest 101
Kansas City 51 61 — 112
Southwest 55 46 —- 101
Kansas City – Jacob Gilyard 50, Dru Smith 16, Elijah Childs 14, Dominic Fragola 9, Isaiah Burton 8, Deng Ding 6, Curtis Lewis II 5, Jake Salisbury 2, Franck Kamgain 2
Southwest – Jared Ridder 23, Cam Davis 19, Christian Bundy 18, Brandon Emmert 14, Conley Garrison 9, Deric Jones 7, Julius Walker 5, Treydon Rackley 4, Dune Piper 2