Playing another state-rated team to wrap up a tough pre-holiday slate, Boone Central/Newman Grove (4-3) scored perhaps its most impressive early-season victory with a 52-44 decision over Omaha World-Herald C1 #6 Kearney Catholic Thursday in Albion.
The Cardinals broke open a tight battle with a midgame surge – outscoring the visitors 25-15 over the second and third quarters – then held off one final Kearney Catholic rally in the closing minutes of an entertaining final stanza.
The teams fought to a 14-14 tie through the first period, with Carsen Grape and Lauren Hedlund splitting 12 of the Cards’ 14 points and Olivia Micek sinking a pair of 3-pointers and scoring eight for the Stars. The game was a 21-21 stalemate until BCNG finished the first half with a 6-0 mini-run.
“The girls did a good job matching their intensity to start the game. We did some good things offensively, such as attacking the hoop, and had good ball movement that allowed us high-percentage shots,” said Cardinal Coach Andy Imus. “We did a better job with ball security in the second quarter and were locked in defensively, holding them to seven points.
“We preached defensive effort in the second half, and the girls responded to the challenge.”
Boone Central/Newman Grove limited the Stars to just eight points in the third period and saw its lead grow as big as 37-23 early in the fourth quarter. Kearney Catholic (4-2) continued to pressure, however, and cut the gap to just 44-40 in the late moments behind a trio of 3-pointers by Micek.
BCNG had its own 3-point answer, as senior Kylee Rasmussen swished a long-range shot to halt the Stars’ run and put the hosts on track to the victory.
“Kearney Catholic upped the full and half court pressure in the final quarter and did get some steals and points off of them,” Imus acknowledged. “We also lost #21 a few times and she hit three 3-pointers to cut a 14-point lead to four.
“Kylee’s three expanded our lead back to seven and ultimately helped break any momentum Catholic had.”
Further details in Print & Online editions of Albion News