By Pat Garry, Staff Writer
The Lady Cubs’ Holiday tournament was played last week, and it featured teams from Milaca, Holdingford, Kimball, and Rockford, who emerged as champions, defeating Kimball, 74-46 in the finale.
(Holdingford Game) In game one Kimball faced Holdingford, which also doubled as a conference match-up. The Huskers jumped out to an early 13-7 lead, but the Cubs answered and took the lead 16-15 on a basket by Erin O’Brien. Kimball went on a 16-0 run and closed the half with a 25-21 lead. The Cubs built a
second-half advantage to 48-32, with under six minutes to play, but the Huskers went on an offensive assault and closed Kimball’s lead to 56-52 with 52 seconds remaining. But the always reliable duo of Ashley Schindele and Cailyn Kuechle each drained 2 of 2 free-throws in the final minute to close out the 60-52 win. Kimball scored half of its points on free throws (30-41; 73%); as Holdingford committed 29 fouls, disqualifying three of their players in the process. “We knew it would be physical and we knew we would have to play through contact and get to the foul line, and that ended up being the difference,” said Coach Jeremy Kuechle.
Stats: Erin O’Brien, 22 points, 10 rebounds; Ashley Schindele, 15 points, 6 rebounds; Cailyn Kuechle, 11 points, 7 rebounds; Rachel Utecht, 10 points,
13 rebounds; Madelyn Hunt,
(Rockford Game) In game two Kimball faced a good #7-ranked Rockford squad, who defeated Milaca a night earlier. Rockford utilized their speed, crisp passing, and swarming defense, to give Kimball fits as they jumped out to a 24-6 lead and took a 41-22 commanding halftime advantage. The Cubs responded in the second stanza and cut the lead to 49-36 with about 11 minutes left. However, the Rockets showed why they sit among the top-ranked teams and took the tournament handily, 74-46. Kimball didn’t shoot well as a team, making 4/24 shots (16%) from the 3-point arc and converting just 14/30 attempts (46%) from the charity stripe. “They started the game with great shooting and we tried not to let their pressure affect our ability to stay calm, but we just couldn’t settle down and take care of the ball. We have to give credit to a good Rockford team, we have to learn from it and we have to improve,” Coach Kuechle commented. Stats: Erin O’Brien, 17 points, 8 rebounds, 4 assists; Ashley Schindele, 14 points,
8 rebounds; Sidney Schreiner,
5 points; Rachel Utecht, 4 points, 6 rebounds; Cailyn Kuechle,
4 points; Madelyn Hunt,
2 points. The All-Tournament Team: Jerica Ploeger, Milaca; Grace Gerads, Holdingford; Erin O’Brien, Kimball; Skyler Palmer, Rockford; and Neely Griffin, Rockford. Tournament Scores: Thursday, December 27: Kimball 60, Holdingford 52; Rockford 60, Milaca 52; Friday, December 28: 3rd place game: Milaca 49 Holdingford 46; Championship: Rockford 74, Kimball 46.
Tournament Scores: Thursday, December 27: Kimball 60, Holdingford 52; Rockford 60, Milaca 52; Friday, December 28: 3rd Place Game: Milaca 49, Holdingford 46; Championship Game: Rockford 74, Kimball 46.