(Kenny Felt/Special to the Tribune)
Walton's 3-pointer from the left wing right as the horn sounded put the Greyhounds up 32-31 going into the locker room. And it appeared that Fort Scott had the momentum coming out of the locker room as Austin Danner hit another triple to start the second half.
But KCK went on a 17-6 run that gave the Blue Devils control.
"Our margin of error is small, so when they turn it over, we have to value the basketball then push it back up and run something," Fort Scott head coach Michael Cook said. "We can't go six minutes without scoring."
The Greyhounds (1-12 East, 2-23 overall) managed to chip into the lead and got within 69-62 on another Danner 3-pointer with 4:02 to go. But the Devils (5-8, 17-8) went on another run, this an 11-0 burst that put things away.
Still, the 'Hounds showed their character. Since going down to five players three weeks ago, Fort Scott's scoring is up about 7 points a game and this was the fifth time over 60 points in six games over that span. (The roster is currently at seven players after two former Fort Scott High players, Cody Harper and Pierce Rienbolt, came on to bolster the numbers).
There won't be many victories for this team this season -- although with the way they've been playing, who can say for certain -- but in the long run, these players will be winners.
"This is character development for them 10 years down the road," Cook says, "Young kids don't see that right now. They see that they lost or won. But 10 years down the road when they get into a tough situation in their life, they can look back and say that they went through tough times before."
Fort Scott held the lead four times in the first half. Danner hit the first two of his eight 3-point goals to put the 'Hounds up 6-0. KCK tied it with a pair of its own 3-pointers but Derrick Thomas drove in for a layup to put FSCC back ahead.
The 'Hounds reclaimed the lead midway through the half with a 12-2 run that put them up 23-17 with 8:46 to go. KCK went on a 13-2 run after that.
The 'Hounds scored 7 of the last 9 of the half, with Walton taking a pass from Danner on the right wing and swishing is 3-pointer at the buzzer.
Danner finished with 29 points on 10-of-18 field-goal shooting while Walton recorded a double-double with 19 points and 13 rebounds. Brandon Morris led Kansas City with 22 points. Duane Smith added 14 and Josh Rupperecht and Zach Bush chipped in with 12 each.
KCK shot 51 percent from the field, making 33 of 65 field-goal attempts and outrebounded the 'Hounds 55-27. Fort Scott shot 37percent from the floor on 23 of 62.
Thomas and Mills each handed out 4 assists. Thomas also had 3 steals.
The Greyhounds travel to Highland Saturday for another conference contest. Play begins at 3 p.m.
KANSAS CITY KANSAS: Morris 8-15 3-4 22, Banks 2-6 0-1 6, Smith 6-14 1-2 14, Balque 3-8 0-0 7, Rupperecht 5-6 2-3 12, Hughes 0-0 0-0 0, Jordan 1-4 0-0 3, Ezeamil 2-3 0-0 4, Bush 6-9 0-0 12. TOTALS: 33-65 6-10 80.
FORT SCOTT: Green 0-9 1-2 1, Harper 1-1 0-0 3, Mills 4-7 0-0 8, Rienbolt 0-3 0-0 0, Danner 10-18 1-2 29, Walton 6-12 6-6 19, Thomas 2-12 1-1 5. TOTALS: 23-62 9-11 65.
Halftime: Fort Scott, 32-31.
Three-point field goals: KCK 8-26 (Morris 3-7, Banks 2-5, Jordan 1-2, Smith 1-6, Balque 1-6), Fort Scott 10-15 (Danner 8-13, Harper 1-1, Walton 1-1, Mills 0-1, Rienbolt 0-2, Thomas 0-3).
Total fouls: KCK 12, Fort Scott 11. Fouled out: none. Technical fouls: none.
Rebounds: KCK 55 (Bush 15), Fort Scott 27 (Walton 13). Assists: KCK 14 (Morris 5), Fort Scott 12 (Mills 4, Thomas 4). Turnovers: KCK 16, Fort Scott 12. Steals: KCK 8 (Banks 4), Fort Scott 6 (Thomas 3). Blocked shots: KCK 1 (Ezeamil), Fort Scott none.