No. 7 Hawks pass non-conference test against Royals

COLO — A dominant first half allowed the seventh-ranked (Class 2A) South Hamilton boys’ basketball team to coast to a non-conference victory here Monday night.

Although Colo-NESCO didn’t exactly make it easy on the Hawks.

A 42-27 halftime lead was sliced into over the final 16 minutes, but South Hamilton walked away with a 65-51 win.

“I was happy with the way we came out and our intensity was good the first half, but I thought we got a little complacent in the second half,” South Hamilton head coach Nathan Hill said. “I was impressed with the Colo-NESCO kids. They played extremely hard and kept coming after us.

“We just have to keep working on our consistency at both ends of the floor.”

South Hamilton (12-0) connected on nearly half of its field goals attempts (26 of 53) and drained seven 3-point buckets, also of them coming from Marco Balderas, Logan Peters and Conner Hill.

Balderas, the Hawks’ all-state senior point guard, orchestrated things on the floor with 18 points, five rebounds and three assists. Conner Hill rattled in 14 points and Cole Berg had another solid all-around effort with 11 points, three steals and three assists.

Peters finished a point shy of giving South Hamilton four double-digit scorers. Cade Balvanz provided nice minutes off the bench inside the paint and chipped in seven points.

Colo-NESCO (6-4) had three players crack double figures, led by Matthew Hill with 15 points. Jacob Clatt dropped in 14 and Phillip Bower finished with 12.

South Hamilton will get back to work in the Heart of Iowa Conference on Friday when it hosts Nevada. The defending league champion Hawks lead the conference by a game over PCM.

South Hamilton 65, Colo-NESCO 51

Monday at Colo

South Hamilton (12-0) — Marco Balderas 7 1-2 18, Cole Berg 5 1-2 11, Logan Peters 3 1-2 9, Quinton Grove 1 0-0 2, Logan Klemp 2 0-0 4, Zeke Balderas 0 0-0 0, Conner Hill 5 2-2 14, Cade Balvanz 3 1-2 7. Totals: 26 6-10 65.

Colo-NESCO (6-4) — Kelly Gray 2 0-0 4, Luke Hill 0 0-0 0, Brighton Clatt 0 0-0 0, Jack McKinney 0 0-0 0, Phillip Bower 4 3-6 12, Sean Cutler 2 0-0 6, Mason Lytle 0 0-0 0, Matthew Hill 5 5-7 15, Jacob Clatt 7 0-0 14, Bryce Niemeyer 0 0-0 0. Totals: 20 8-13 51.

S. Hamilton 18 24 12 11 — 65

Colo-NESCO 13 14 15 9 — 51

3-point field goals — SH 7 (M. Balderas 3, Peters 2, Hill 2); C-N 3 (Cutler 2, Bower). Rebounds — SH 28 (M. Balderas 5, Klemp 5, Grove 4). Steals — SH SH 6 (Berg 3). Assists — SH 13 (M. Balderas 3, Berg 3). Turnovers — SH 7, C-N 10. Team fouls — SH 13, C-N 12. Fouled out — none.

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