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Holden Girls Basketball Team Ends Regular Season With Win

swift pursuit… Lady Eagle center Jaci Gower (2) chases down a loose ball during the Holden girls basketball team’s conference game at Higginsville on Thursday, Feb. 15. Photo By Steve Edwards

 

The Holden girls basketball team played the role of spoiler in Higginsville’s Senior Night game by defeating the Lady Huskers in a 40-35 final score on Thursday, Feb. 15.

The final quarter of the conference contest featured a comeback effort by the Lady Eagles after Lady Huskers held a lead through a majority of the first three periods.

“It was really a back-and-forth game,” said Holden girls basketball coach Ben Kiger. “The biggest thing to me was we were able to hold them without a field goal in the fourth quarter.”

Higginsville opened scoring in the game on a three-point basket from senior guard Hailey Linebach. Lady Eagle senior guard Rachel Wamsley would tie the score at 6-6 a few minutes later on her own shot from beyond the arc before the quarter ended with Higginsville ahead 9-8.

A two-point bucket from Holden forward Lilee Keller gave the Lady Eagles a short-lived one-point lead in the second quarter before Higginsville answered with a made free throw to knot the score at 12-12. Holden center Jaci Gower put the Lady Eagles ahead 13-12 with a free throw. Higginsville would respond by closing out the first half on a 7-2 run to put the halftime score at 19-15.

“I knew that with the triangle-and-two that Lilee and Jaci would have to have big games, and they delivered,” said coach Kiger of Holden’s answer to Higginsville’s defensive scheme.

Keller would end the game with a team-high 12 points for Holden. Gower followed closely with 10 total points.

The Lady Eagles chipped into Higginsville’s lead in the third quarter with a 13-11 scoring advantage posted by Holden in the frame with Wamsley and Addy Campbell each scoring four points to lead the charge. Keller kicked in three points, and Gower added a two-point field goal in the third period.
Holden’s recipe for its fourth quarter comeback included a strong defensive effort and finding ways to get to the free throw line. Twelve points scored by the Lady Eagles in the fourth period were answered by Higginsville with five points on made free throws out of six attempts. Linebach made four of Higginsville’s fourth quarter free throws with Addison Frerking converting one.

During that final stretch, the Lady Eagles made nine appearances at the charity stripe with four of those free shots finding the bottom of the net. Campbell closed out scoring in the game by converting her third free throw of the fourth quarter on six attempts.

“I had told the girls to keep it close with about four minutes to go in the game, and we would go man,” said coach Kiger. “With 4:02 left, I switched to man. We were able to run out the last 20-some seconds on a fantastic defensive stance to not let them get closer.”

The Lady Eagles held Linebach to a game-high 18 points after the shooting guard put up 28 points in a home loss to Higginsville during Holden’s Senior Night game on January 19. No other Lady Huskers reached double digits in scoring in the most recent match-up last Thursday as Frerking followed Linebach with six points.

“Adalyn had a huge three in the corner in the third quarter,” noted coach Kiger. “Lilee led us with 12 points, Jaci had 10, Adalyn had nine, Rachel had seven, Jazzy (Brown) had a huge steal and lay-up in the fourth quarter. Even though (Lilly) Carver didn’t score, she did a really good job rebounding and playing defense. She has shown so much improvement over the year.”

Lady Eagles Come Back In Win Over Odessa
The Holden girls basketball team rallied on the road to secure a win over MRVC-West opponent Odessa by the final score of 49-45 on Tuesday, Feb. 13.

The Lady Eagles posted a 19-9 scoring advantage in the fourth quarter to overcome a late deficit in the game.

“The Odessa game was an exciting one,” said coach Kiger. “With about five minutes left in the game, we were down nine and went man. We got some turnovers and cut it to five.

“Rachel hit a gigantic three-point shot to cut it to two,” continued coach Kiger. “We got another stop, and Adalyn Campbell hit a three in the corner to up one. It was a really fun game. It was nice to have some success in those moments. I thought the girls all night played well as a unit.”

The game began with Holden taking a 13-12 lead after a quarter of play before the Lady Bulldogs took over with a 12-8 scoring advantage in the second period for a halftime score of 24-21 in Odessa’s favor.

Odessa continued its pace in the third quarter by posting a 12-9 advantage to head into the final period with a 36-30 lead.

Holden’s 19 points scored in the fourth quarter were dispersed among Campbell, Gower, Keller, and Wamsley with seven points from Wamsley leading the late effort. Those four players combined on a seven-for-11 conversion rate at the free throw line during the final pivotal period.
“We finished the game at the free throw line and were able to seal the win,” said coach Kiger.

As a team, Holden converted 13 of its 21 free throw attempts on the night.

Keller led Holden in scoring with 15 points. Campbell scored 13 points, and Gower added 10 to put three Lady Eagles in double digit scoring. Wamsley’s 7 points scored in the fourth quarter set her game total. Jazzy Brown totaled 4 points.

Lady Eagles Edged By Lexington
Seven days after the Lady Eagles defeated conference foe Lexington in overtime in a home game for Holden, the Minutewomen returned the favor in a 49-46 win at Lexington on Monday, Feb. 12.

“Adalyn had 19 points, and I really thought she was going to lead us to victory,” said coach Kiger. “In the end, we missed way too many free throws and shots, but the way the girls responded the next two games says a lot about their character and toughness.”

The Holden girls basketball team ends the regular season with an overall record of 11-14, and an MRVC-East mark of 3-7.

The Holden girls basketball team as the No. 4 seed was set to begin play in the Class 3, District 14 Girls Basketball Tournament at Summit Christian Academy High School earlier this week on Monday, Feb. 19 with a first-round game against No. 5 seed Hogan Prep. Game results were not available at press time. With a first-round win on Monday, the Holden girls basketball team would play No. 1 seed Lone Jack in the semifinals on Wednesday, Feb. 21 at 5:30 p.m. The first-place game for the Class 3, District 14 Girls Basketball Tournament is scheduled for Friday, Feb. 23 at 6 p.m.

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