After defeating Norfolk Catholic in a bracket play-in game Jan. 28, the Boone Central/Newman Grove Lady Cardinals had the unenviable task of facing #1 seed Guardian Angels CC in the opening round of Mid-State Conference Tournament play Monday, Jan. 30.
BC/NG battled the Bluejays gamely before dropping a 42-34 decision and moving to consolation play. The Cards threatened GACC (16-2) numerous times, but could not get enough shots to fall to pull off the upset.
“We had a good first quarter, taking an 8-5 lead. We could have expanded that, but 3-of-13 shooting did not help,” said Coach Andy Imus. “We hurried some shots in the second quarter and GACC outscored us 18-7. Tessa Hedlund did make a 3-pointer before the buzzer to make the halftime score 23-15.
“We had a 12-9 advantage in the third quarter and cut the lead to four in the fourth, but a couple of untimely turnovers took away the chance to get closer. We had great looks at the basket, but a 12-of-50 shooting night didn’t do us any favors.
“We had good execution – just couldn’t get the ball in the hoop at times. I was proud of the way our girls competed,” Imus praised. “A few unfortunate bounces went the other way or it could have been a different outcome.”
Tessa Hedlund paced BC/NG with 20 points, hitting six 3-point shots. Jenna Kramer added six points and grabbed 17 rebounds.
Shot-making, or lack of, continued to plague Boone Central/Newman Grove (10-10) in Thursday’s consolation round, as the Cardinals were defeated 39-28 by O’Neill.
The Lady Cardinals led for a good portion of a defensive battle, but a closing 17-5 fourth-quarter run by O’Neill (11-9) proved to be the difference.
“We had good looks again, but just had a hard time converting close range shots,” Imus rued. “We also gave up 12 offensive rebounds that resulted in nine second chance points for O’Neill.
“O’Neill shot 19-of-23 at the foul line, including 15-of-18 in the fourth quarter. They did a great job of rebounding and staying on the attack. They took away our offensive strengths, and that put our offensive flow in a bind.”
“We need to continue to strive for a consistent four-quarter game.”
Carsen Grape led Card scoring with 10 points. Tessa Hedlund and Lauren Hedlund each tallied six points. Lauren Hedlund also pulled down seven rebounds and made three steals.
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