Yuma boys keep winning despite constant rescheduling

A constantly-changing schedule has made it tough for the Yuma High School boys basketball team to find its consistency.
“Everything is so inconsistent, it’s hard to find it,” head coach Dave Sheffield said. “We just need to have some consistency, with the kids knowing they’re having practice or be in games. This is the fewest practices I’ve had to this point in my career.”

Yuma has had seven reschedules this season due to the weather and other factors. The latest were the game at Sidney, Nebraska, this past Saturday postponed to Wednesday, February 1, due to concerns with traveling conditions, and Saturday’s home game against Peyton rescheduled to February 15. The Peyton game was rescheduled due to a funeral Saturday for a Peyton staff member who passed away.
Still, the former Indians rolled to a 61-34 home win over Akron, last Friday, improving to 7-2 overall and 3-0 in Lower Platte play. They entered this week ranked No. 5 in the Class 3A Rating Percentage Index, and No. 8 in the Top 10 poll.
“They’re figuring it out,” Sheffield said of his players. “We kind of are getting practice during the game.”
Though the Peyton game has been moved, Yuma does have one home this week as they host rival Wray on Friday night in The Pit. Yuma battled to a 52-50 win at Wray in the season opener in December, and likely will have its hands full again Friday. Wray entered this week 7-4 overall and 3-0 in the LPAA, ranked No. 4 in the 2A Top 10 and No. 7 in the 2A RPI. The Eagles likely are Yuma’s biggest challenge to another Lower Platte title during a season in which the rest of the league is relatively down from recent standards.
On the flip side, Yuma is going to face a very tough 3A district field later in February.
“We can’t slip up at all in league play,” Sheffield said, “and this one Friday is big. (The Eagles) have size, but I think we did a job with that the first time we played them.”
Yuma lost senior Jake Haruf, the team’s leading scorer recently, to an injury in the opening minutes of last week’s win over Akron.
However, Yuma never missed a beat against a tough, but outmanned, Akron squad.
The former Indians ran out to a 19-7 lead. Forest Rutledge made consecutive 3-pointers while scoring eight of Yuma’s last 10 points in the first half for a 34-14 lead.
Akron played tough defense, and did all it could to stick around, but the Rams never got closer than 19 points in the second half. Yuma’s subs closed the game with a 7-0 flurry for the final 27-point margin.
Both teams shot under 40 percent from the floor. However, Yuma took 28 shots from deep range, making 10, while the Rams missed all five attempts from behind the arc. Yuma held a 35-28 rebounding advantage, and came up with 17 steals while dishing out 12 assists.
Rutledge had a double-double with 14 points and 13 rebounds, along with four steals, Javier Duran 12 points and three steals, Brody Sheffield 10 points and three steals, Daman Hernandez seven points, Jesus Ross five points, four rebounds, and three assists, Jonathan Carrillo four points and two steals, Silas Baucke three points and two steals, Cesar Gamboa three points, Cesar Varela two points and two rebounds, Cristian Duarte one point and seven rebounds, and Jonathan Thomson three assists and two steals.
“We know how deep we can go, and what each guy can do,” Sheffield said. “Now we have to get floor time.”