Basketball notes: Northern Heights girl ends FT streak at 120.
Lakin Preisner’s focus on free throws is intense. If the basketball bounces on the rim even twice, she’s irked.
The Northern Heights junior guard was especially frustrated with herself when she missed a free throw last Thursday against Herington.
Then she found out that the miss snapped a streak of 120 free throws made in a row, which coach Lanny Massey is trying to get the Kansas Sports Hall of Fame and the National Federation of State High School Associations to acknowledge as a record.
It was her first missed free throw since Dec. 8, 2012.
“I was a little disappointed,” Preisner said of the miss. “But I was more shocked than ever. I don’t really keep track of how many I get in a row. I shoot the free throw and make the basket.”
The national girls record is 70, while the state record is 35.
Massey said he didn’t tell her about the record, which she set last season, because he didn’t want to stress her out.
“I didn’t want to put any added pressure on her,” he said. “She puts all kinds of pressure on herself.”
Preisner isn’t psychotic about free throws. She said she shoots 10-25 free throws during practice and maybe another 20 after practice.
“I do drive quite a bit, and I get fouled quite a bit,” she said. “That’s probably why I started taking free throws more seriously. If they’re going to put me on the line, I need to make those points for my team.”
Fiegel nears 400 — When the Collegiate boys (3-0) play host to Wellington (2-2) on Friday night, the Spartans will have a chance to give coach Mitch Fiegel his 400th win at the school.
Fiegel, who is in his 25th season with the Spartans, has won 399 games at Collegiate and 414 in his career.
“I know one thing,” he said. “You have to coach a long time to win 400 games. You have to be in a good place, have to have a lot of good kids and parents and it has to go right for a long time. I feel very fortunate.”
Fiegel, who has five Class 3A titles, refused to name any special players.
“Oh, I wouldn’t even know where to start,” he said.
He then looked around the photo-covered walls of his office and counted — there are 79 photos of former players. They’re only the players who played three of four seasons for Fiegel, including their senior season.
“Every single one of those kids had something to do with where we are today,” he said.
He does have one regret, though. All the photos are 11-by-14.
“If I would have known I was going to stay this long, I would have done 8-by-10s,” said Fiegel, who is 52.
Rankings — In the final coaches association rankings of 2013, the Northwest girls were ranked No. 7 in Class 6A.
But Northwest coach Jim Mernagh, whose team opened the season at 2-0 before losing to No. 2-ranked South on Tuesday night, wasn’t sure how the Grizzlies had such a high ranking. Especially because Northwest was 10-12 in 2012-13.
The Grizzlies have talent in Calea Carr, Katie Cramer, Lyndi McIntyre and Cassie Pauls, but Mernagh knows his team still has plenty to prove.
I think we’re going to be good,” Mernagh said. “… I think we’re good enough to compete for a City League championship. That’s one of our goals every year.”
As for the rankings? Mernagh laughed.
“I don’t look at those,” he said. “I don’t talk to the girls about it.”