There was plenty to celebrate for No. 2-ranked (Class 3A) Hayden girls basketball Friday night.

It was Hayden coach Carvel Reynaldson’s birthday, and after the Wildcats survived a 57-54 Centennial League dog fight with 6A Manhattan, senior standout Lauren Sandstrom was named Hayden's Queen of Court in front of a packed house at the Bueltel Activity Center.

BryleeMeierMan 1Hayden junior Brylee Meier led the way with 17 points as the Wildcats improved to 12-1 with Friday's 57-54 Centennial League win over Manhattan. [Photo by Rex Wolf/TSN]

AmeliaRamseyMan 2Junior Amelia Ramsey scored 11 points for Hayden in Friday's 57-54 Centennial League win over Manhattan. [Photo by Rex Wolf/TSN]

The game went back and forth with the Indians having the biggest lead at 28-21 three minutes before halftime and taking a 30-27 lead at the break.

But Hayden came out of halftime on fire, led by two Brylee Meier 3-pointers and five straight points from transfer Amelia Ramsey to take a 38-34 lead.

The Wildcats never trailed the rest of the way, scratching and claw their way to the three-point win.

“We came out in the second half and we didn't get beat down the court like we did in the first half,'' Reynoldson said. "We played harder and definitely played more as a team offensively.”

“Having Amelia added to our roster allows us to really spread out our offense,'' said Meier, a 6-foot junior who led Hayden with 17 points. "Spreading our offense is allowing me to get more shots on the perimeter. So, having Amelia gives us a crazy advantage.”

The Wildcats got double-figure scoring nights from four players, with juniors Norma Greco, Ramsey and Kaliya Fulton all adding 11 points.

“I love the balance of scoring tonight,'' Reynoldson said. "Brylee got loose with some 3-pointers that were really crucial in our run and balance carried us the rest of the way.”

“I wouldn’t say I’m really on a hot streak right now, I just show up for my team when they need it,'' Meier said. "We all play really good together already and they help me get open shots, too.''

BryleeMeierMan 2Senior Lauren Sandstrom (left) and junior Brylee Meier celebrate a big play in Hayden's 57-54 win over Manhattan Friday night. [Photo by Rex Wolf/TSN]

“We know how to win,'' Reynoldson said. "We really struggled from the free throw line up until the fourth quarter and then when the chips were down we hit them and that's what we have done the last couple years in the fourth quarter.

"We say greatness happens in the fourth quarter and our girls stepped up tonight.”

The Wildcats have a huge week coming up with league two road games -- Tuesday night at 11-1 Emporia and Friday at Washburn Rural.

Emporia’s lone loss was a 50-45 decision to Hayden in a December tournament at White Auditorium in Emporia.

“We still are preparing for Emporia on Tuesday,'' Meier said. I think moving the ball and being more physical with them will give us a good advantage against them. We already have such good players, so we just need to be physical and we will take care of business on Tuesday.” 


Manhattan 17 13 11 13-- 54

Hayden       14 13 15 15-- 57

Manhattan (8-6, 2-2) – Doering 4-10 5-6 14, Larson 3-11 4-4 12, Ball 3-10 0-0 8, Hilgers 2-5 1-2 6, Peabody 3-4 0-0 6, Ruliffson 2-4 0-0 4, Busch 1-2 0-0 2, Parcell 1-1 0-0 2, Dodds 0-2 0-2 0. Totals 19-49 10-14 54.

Hayden (13-1, 4-1) – Meier 4-7 6-6 17, Ramsey 4-8 3-3 11, Greco 3-8 3-6 11, Fulton 3-4 3-6 11, Sandstrom 2-4 0-2 4, Grunert 1-6 0-0 2, Reid 0-0 1-2 1, Huscher 0-1 0-0 0. Totals 17-38 16-25 57.

3-Point goals– Manhattan 6 (Larson 2, Ball 2, Doering 1, Hilgers 1), Hayden 7 (Meier 3, Greco 2, Fulton 2). Total Fouls – Manhattan 20, Hayden 10.

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