Photo Credit: Jacob Padilla

Five Thoughts on Tuesday’s Omaha Skutt at Lincoln Pius X Double-Header

January 25, 2023

Omaha Skutt made a jump up in class and took a trip down to Lincoln to face Pius X in a varsity double-header on Tuesday.

The SkyHawks girls took care of business, 57-35, to remain unbeaten against Nebraska competition while the Thunderbolt boys handed Skutt its first loss of the season, 54-49.

Here are five thoughts on the games.

SkyHawks Fly High

The girls got the party started, and through a quarter and a half the Class A Thunderbolts (who were 13-2 heading into Tuesday) had the lead at 17-14 after playing well.

Then Skutt flipped a switch and took control, ripping off an 18-2 run spanning the second and third quarters to build a double-digit lead, and it never looked back.

The SkyHawks, who start two juniors and three sophomores, shot 6-for-12 from deep in the second half to run away with it. Sophomore Mia McMahon hit four of those herself, finishing with a team-high 14 points on 5-of-8 from the field (4-of-7 from 3) and three assists. Fellow sophomore Molly Ladwig added 11 points on 4-of-9 from the field (3-of-7 from 3), five boards and two steals. 

Junior guard Peyton McCabe, a Drake commit and one of the best shooters in the state, misfired on all seven of her 3-point attempts and finished with just 10 points (plus four assists and three steals), but the SkyHawks still won by 22 because of their defense.

Skutt’s tallest starter matches Pius’ shortest at 5-foot-9, but the SkyHawks still held the Thunderbolts to 4-for-22 shooting inside the arc and forced 17 turnovers. 

Lights Out

On the boys side, the game was close throughout with a handful of lead changes. The difference proved to be the 3-point line.

Class A No. 7 Pius X shot a season-best 11-for-23 from deep, offsetting their struggles inside the arc (8-for-28, 28.6%) and at the free-throw line (5-for-13, 38.5%). Every time Skutt made a push in the second half, it seemed like Pius answered with a big 3.

The hero of the game was Pius junior Kellan Humm who came off the bench to score a team- and career-high 15 points on 5-of-6 from deep. Fellow junior Adam Searcey added 11 points and went 3-for-3 from deep including the dagger that pushed the lead to six with just under a minute to play. 

Senior Jackson Kessler got the Bolts off to a good start with two 3s in the first quarter. Even Aiden Brass, a junior who checked in when the team’s lading scorer, Treyson Anderson, picked up his fourth foul midway through the fourth, knocked down a 3 the first time he touched the ball to put Pius up by eight.

Brack the Beast

Pius got the win, but the best player on the floor far and away was Skutt senior and South Dakota commit Jake Brack. He finished with 26 points on 11-of-16 from the field and 4-of-6 from the foul line, seven rebounds and four assists.

The 6-foot-9 forward scored in a variety of ways — going to work in the post, putting the ball on the deck to attack, crashing the offensive glass — and he scored nine points in the fourth quarter as he tried to lead Skutt’s comeback.

Defensively, Brack also did a great job walling up and staying in front of Anderson, snapping his streak of double-digit scoring games at 10 by holding him to eight points.

Skutt has a talented roster overall, but Brack is the biggest reason why the SkyHawks are the favorites in Class B.

Pius Frontcourt Holds its Own

The 3-point shooting won Pius the game, but the play of its frontcourt made a big impact as well.

The 6-foot-9 Anderson only scored eight points, his second-lowest total of the season, and he shot 4-of-11 from the field, but he still made a big impact with a couple of Division I coaches in the stands. He grabbed 10 rebounds, blocked three shots and nabbed a steal, and he was the only Thunderbolt who had any sort of success whatsoever defending Brack.

His frontcourt partner, 6-foot-4 Wayne State football commit Nate Schauer, was the most physical player on the court and chipped in eight points, seven rebounds, a steal and a block. He was also the one kicking it out to all the 3-point shooters, finishing with a game-high five assists.

Anderson and Schauer also combined for nine offensive rebounds, and that edge in possessions played a big part in the Thunderbolts outscoring the Skyhawks.

Skutt’s Step Up

Omaha Skutt is No. 1 in Class B in both the the boys and girls coaches polls at NebPreps.com. Tuesday was the boys’ third game of the season against a Class A team after beating North Platte and Bellevue East earlier in the year. The girls also beat North Platte.

They both have one more jump up in class left this season as the SkyHawks will host the Omaha Central girls (11-6, No. 8 in the poll) and boys (9-6) on Friday.

The girls game is particularly intriguing as it will feature two of the top juniors in the state in McCabe and Central point guard Inia Jones, a Division I prospect in her own right.

For the boys, Skutt has more size than most Class A schools as it starts 6-foot-8, 6-foot-9, 6-foot-9 in the frontcourt and brings a 6-foot-6 senior off the bench. They should have no problems matching up physically. However, to get the win on Friday the SkyHawks will need more offensive production outside of Brack and Wayne State commit Ferrin. The rest of the team combined for just eight points against the Thunderbolts on Tuesday.

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