The week started well for the Boone Central/Newman Grove Lady Cardinals, with an upset victory at Norfolk Catholic, but ended with back-to-back losses to Battle Creek and elimination from the annual Mid-State Conference tournament.
Boone Central/Newman Grove (4-14) traveled to Norfolk Thursday, where it clipped the Catholic Lady Knights 37-35. BC/NG had a strong start, taking an 11-7 first-quarter lead, and maintained a 20-14 halftime advantage as Kelsey Thompson and Lauren Hedlund each hit 3-point shots in the second period.
The Cardinals held Catholic to seven points for the third straight quarter following intermission, but could score just five themselves, as the lead shrunk to 25-21. The hosts finally got untracked in the final stanza and took a 31-29 lead at one point, but BC/NG sank 8-of-11 free throw opportunities to come out on top.
“The girls competed hard and found a win vs. a good Norfolk Catholic team,” Cardinal Coach Andy Imus praised.
Boone Central/Newman Grove hosted Battle Creek (6-13) at Newman Grove Friday, and again suffered turnover woes in a 48-25 loss to the Bravettes.
Battle Creek forced 28 Card turnovers, scoring 22 points off those miscues, and also had a 26-8 edge in points scored in the paint. The visitors raced to a 15-5 lead to start the game, held a 30-14 halftime advantage, and were up 43-17 entering the final quarter.
The two teams met again at Battle Creek Saturday for a Mid-State tournament bracket play-in game. Boone Central/Newman Grove had more success on the offensive end, but the host Bravettes claimed a second straight victory, 51-43.
“Battle Creek ran a ‘1-3 chaser’ and ‘diamond-and-one defense against Lauren,” Imus noted. “We handled it better in the second game, but just had a hard time valuing the ball.”
For the third straight game, BC/NG’s turnovers increased. Battle Creek forced 30 in the game, which resulted in 22 Bravette points.
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