COLUMBIA – Mason Murray wiped his forehead and flicked his hand after each 3-pointer. He doesn’t get to celebrate an abundance of threes very often.
But on Friday he took advantage, scoring thirteen points while hitting three from long distance.
The Hickman boys’ basketball team took down Helias (17-5) 68-52. Although the result was lopsided, the game was close until the final quarter.
Helias tried a new strategy against the Kewpies (20-2): a zone defense. It dared Hickman to shoot the ball from the perimeter. That's where Murray came in.
The Kewpies only hit four 3-pointers, but three of them were from the senior, who took advantage of the zone, which focused more on junior Jimmy Whitt and seniors Jordan Jones and Chris Clark.
“Mason is really our zone buster,” Whitt said. “When teams play zone, he gets some open looks.”
Coach David Johnson said has had a cold stretch recently, but it was nice to see his shots fall. Murray certainly liked the sight of the zone to help him bust out of a slump.
"I've had an off stretch," Murray said. "But against a zone is when I get some good looks. And they fell in tonight."
Hickman was patient against the Helias zone, and picked their shots carefully.
“That was the plan,” Whitt said. “We had to be patient and take good shots."
Clark and Whitt found openings in the defense late to stretch the lead. Whitt had three breakaway dunks in the fourth quarter alone, and led all scorers with 22 points.
The Kewpies are off for 10 days. They play Holt Feb. 24.