Olivia Reed scored 55 points last week on 67% shooting, helping to give the Cardinals three wins against Alliance (47-13), Rapid City Christian (61-39), and Valentine (48-17). Reed also shot 10-12 from the free throw line. At one point in the Feb. 4 contest against Alliance she scored 18 of Chadron’s 26 points amid a 26-2 Cardinal run between the third and fourth quarters. Olivia ended up with 20 in the contest, and on Friday at RCC she eclipsed the 300 point mark on the year while maintaining a field goal percentage over 60% on the season.
In the contest against Alliance, Chadron took advantage of their sizeable lead to work on running constructed offensive sets. This seemed to benefit them in their other two wins on the week.
Shea Bailey, who battled an illness last week, still put up 6, 15, and 14 in the three games. Coming off the bench versus RCC she made an instant impact as she hit a three on the first possession, then turned forced a RCC turnover on the next possession which resulted in a Dawn Dunbar layup. Bailey currently leads the team in steals at 70 and in deflections at 75. She also leads the team in assists at 60. One of Bailey’s more impressive stats on the year is her 51 three pointers made. She is the far away leader in that stat in both percentage at 38% and in attempts (136).
For the Cardinals to get past RCC last week they had to go through talented Comet freshman, Olivia Kieffer. She scored 31 in the contest which is the most a player has scored against Chadron this year by a wide margin. She scored 31 of her team’s 39 points on 12-24 shooting. Kieffer caught many of the Cardinal defenders off guard by pulling up six to seven feet behind the trey line at will. She hit 5-11 three pointers on the game and kept her team in the game until Olivia Reed scored six straight points at the start of the third to give the Cards a 12 point advantage.
But Chadron really put the game out of reach at the end of the third quarter. With a full speed runner Kieffer once again cut the game to ten points past the half-way point of the third. But on the next possession the Comets, in a man-man defense, forgot to guard Shea Bailey who was bringing the ball down. She hit a trey without hesitation at the top of the key to give the Cardinals a 13 point lead. Going right into their press after the make, Jacey Garrett collected a steal and dished to Dawn Dunbar for the layup. The Cardinals sensing a key opportunity at this juncture, turned up their offensive urgency and got a quick three make from Garrett on the next possession. Then they got another stop and turned that into another Bailey three from the top of the key. The Cardinals went from 10 up to 21 up in less than a minute and a half of play.
In the fourth quarter, Cardinal guard Tyleigh Strotheide, suffered a right ankle sprain that sidelined her the next night against Valentine. Strotheide is the third leading scorer for the team at 6.6ppg. She is also one of the key threats from the three line in addition to Bailey, and has sunk 19 three pointers on the year. 11 of those 19 have come in the second half in key spots for the Cardinals. Tyleigh also gets a ton of deflections on defense and has disruptive length against smaller guards. She has 45 assists on the year, and has been very opportunistic on the offensive glass in the second half of the year, getting 27 offensive rebounds on the season.
The Cardinals will hope to get her back in some capacity this Friday versus Sidney at home.
The Cardinals hit a season high 11 three pointers in the win at Rapid City Christian.
Sophomore guard, Jacey Garrett, dished out 12 assists last week on her way to an 11 point, nine rebound, five steal week. Garrett holds a 1/1 assist to turnover ratio is tied for tops on the team with Anika Burke. Jacey has 57 assists on the year which is second on the team, and has been one of, if not the most, effective ball handler for the Cards. If the Cardinals look to break a press in a flurry, chances are they will get her the ball and go from there. Garrett has also been placed with the tough task all year of playing the bottom in the Cardinal one-three-one. This makes her the player who has to cover baseline shooters from corner to corner. Garrett has been a great rebounder for her size as well, and is third on the team in offensive rebounds behind Reed and Burke.
Against Valentine, Chadron was able to redeem themselves for when they fell to them in the Holiday Tournament earlier in the year. Just like in their previous meeting, Valentine made Chadron a little uncomfortable by slowing the tempo down. With the game in a 14-9 Chadron lead in the early stages of the second quarter, Olivia Reed sensed the offensive urgency and gave the Cards a 6-0 run. This run was capped off with a Bailey trey to give the Cardinals a 23-9 lead. 23 points would be more than enough for Chadron to win the game as the Badgers scored a season low 17 on the night.
The Badgers were without their second best player in Skyler Reagle who left the game after the first quarter with an apparent knee injury. Her tempo and ball handling absence forced the Badgers into more turnovers and offensive opportunities for Chadron.
When you glance at Cardinal junior Anika Burke’s stats on the year, there is stat that jumps off the page. That stat is free throws. The six foot center is 35-40 on the year, which is good for 88% on the year. This statistic certainly puts her in the running for one of the higher percentages in the panhandle if not the entire state of NE. Anika also leads the team in blocks with 28, and it’s rare to watch a game where she doesn’t get multiple swats from the low block. Burke has recently been stepping out to the elbow too, where she has been knocking down shots with greater confidence than earlier in the year. Anika has consistently passed the ball well all year to the tune of 40 assists and team best 1.05/1.00 assists to turnover ratio.
The Cardinals will probably play their biggest game of the regular season this Friday in Chadron against Sidney at 5:30. The game has major implications for wild card spots and seedings at district. The Cardinals currently sit at fourth in the state in power points behind Broken Bow, North Bend Central, and Lincoln Christian. A win would certainly see Chadron maintain the fourth spot if not jump at least one spot.
Chadron 47, Alliance 13
Chadron: Reed 20, Bailey 6, Strotheide, 6, Garrett 4, Hamar 4, Dunbar 3, Burke 2, Watson 1, Mak. Fuller 1. 18-53 (4-18) 7-14 47 points. Rebounds 34 (17-17): Bailey 6, Mak. Fuller 4, Dunbar 4. Assists 11: Garrett 4. Turnovers 17, steals 24, blocks 2, fouls 14.
Alliance: Davis 5, Burke 2, Weare 2, Hopp 2, Browning 1, Hood 1. 5-27 (0-3) 3-7 13 points. Rebounds 25, assists 1, turnovers 34, steals 12, blocks 2, fouls 15.
Chadron 8 20 18 1 -47
Alliance 3 2 3 5 -13
Chadron 61, Rapid City Christian 39
Chadron: Reed 17, Bailey 15, Hamar 8, Dunbar 8, Strotheide 8, Garrett 3, Burke 2. 23-52 (11-23) 4-7 61 points. Rebounds 33 (16-17): Reed 7, Bailey 6, Dunbar 4. Assists 18: Dunbar 4, Strotheide 4. Turnovers 17, steals 14, blocks 6, fouls 10.
Rapid City Christian: Kieffer 31, Pierce 6, Armendariz 2. 15-49 (7-25) 2-4 39 points. Rebounds 29 (14-15): Kieffer 10. Assists 6, turnovers 23, steals 7, blocks 6, fouls 10.
Chadron 16 14 18 13 -61
Rapid City Christian 10 12 4 13 -39
Chadron 48, Valentine 17
Chadron: Reed 18, Bailey 14, Dunbar 5, Burke 4, Garrett 4, Hamar 3. 17-39 (6-19) 8-10 48 points. Rebounds 22 (16-6): Dunbar 5, Reed 4. Assists 10: Dunbar 4. Turnovers 11, steals 14, blocks 5, fouls 10.
Valentine: Hitchcock 5, Tinant 4, Hollenbeck 3, Hesse 3, Phillips 2. 6-29 (2-15) 3-7 17 points. Rebounds 22 (16-6), assists 4, turnovers 25, steals 7, blocks 2, fouls 11.
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Chadron 12 15 9 12 -48
Valentine 4 8 5 0 -17
At the mid-point of the fourth quarter versus Valentine, senior Sage Little Moon hit a three from the left wing to give the Cards a 72-40 lead. It was the Cardinals 13th three pointer of the game, and they would go on to hit one more in the contest for an even 14 on the night.
Nobody in the game was in the zone more than Cardinal senior, Kristian Bartlett. He hit six threes on the night, going 6-7 from deep. In the first half he hit three treys which caused the net to get stuck. None of his three pointers seemed to hit rim, and his 20 points on the night marked his second best mark on the year. The night before against Rapid City Christian, Bartlett hit three from deep and scored a season best, 21 points. Bartlett has been in double figures in four of the last five games, and now holds a team best 37% from behind the arc, and is second in three point makes with 36 behind Trevor Berry.
The Cardinals got wins over Valentine (78-43) and Rapid City Christian (67-61) last week, but their best performance on week was probably the first half at Alliance. They ended up losing the contest, 43-66, but at halftime they were only down 20-25 to the #10 team in Class B in the state. It was somewhat reminiscent of their first half performance versus #5 B Scottsbluff back in December. They were efficient in getting good looks on offense and were able to keep Alliance off of the defensive glass.
Like that game versus Scottsbluff, the Bulldogs came out in the third quarter and scored 29 points to pull away. The Cardinals turned it over seven times in the third as opposed to the five turnovers they had the entire first half, and the Bulldogs gather six offensive rebounds in the third in addition to shooting 52% from the field.
Nevertheless, the solid half of basketball was a boost for the Cards in their next two games as they were able to keep a Rapid City Christian team to 30% from the floor and only 6-36 from the three point line. They also forced them into 17 turnovers and were able to limit the Comets to eight third quarter points while scoring 15 in the frame.
The real stat of the game versus RCC were the 50 free throws shot by both teams combined. It was a long game for viewers, there is no doubt, as there were 40 fouls called on the night and 51 threes put up, with only 11 of them going in, combined.
Chadron put 10 players into the scoring column which they would match the next night against Valentine.
Chadron probably had their most enjoyable game of the year versus Valentine. In a game which Chadron was able to rest their starters for nearly the entire fourth quarter, they saw extended minutes from their bench players. The Cardinal bench reveled in watching senior Sage Little Moon and Jon Varhenkamp play nearly the entire four quarter, with Little Moon scoring nine points and knocking down two threes in his minutes.
A frustrated Valentine squad was assessed two technical fouls in the second half of the game, and were simply unable to get stops on the defensive end to stay in the game. Valentine was boosted in the contest by senior guard, Jacob Dorian, who didn’t play for Valentine in the Holiday Tournament but his 17 in the game were not enough. Valentine’s best player on the night, as it has been for most of the year, was Grant Fischer who scored 20 on the night and does a good job of setting the tempo for Valentine.
The Cardinals will finish out the regular season this week when they play Sidney on Friday in Chadron at 7:00, and then they head to Newcastle on Saturday for a contest at 6:30. The Cardinals seem headed for a game against Mitchell, or possibly Ogallala, in the first round of subdistricts for next week. Mitchell and Ogallala face off against one another on Feb. 13 in a regular season matchup.
Chadron 43, Alliance 66
Chadron: Berry 12, Heusman 12, Dunbar 7, Bartlett 5, Chima 4, Reitz 2, Sayaloune 1. 14-38 (7-19) 8-17 43 points. Rebounds 31 (24-7): Heusman 10. Assists 10, turnovers 15, steals 1, blocks 2, fouls 12.
Alliance: Baker 22, Clarke 19, Palmer 10, DuBray 9, Sanders 3, Farritor 2, Kindred 1. 26-62 (8-24) 6-11 66 points. Rebounds 37, assists 16, turnovers 3, steals 10, fouls 11.
Chadron 12 8 15 8 -43
Alliance 11 14 29 12 -66
Chadron 67, Rapid City Christian 61
Chadron: Bartlett 21, Heusman 11, Provance 8, Berry 7, Dunbar 6, Brennan 5, Sayaloune 4, Collins 2, Chima 2, Reitz 1. 25-55 (5-25) 12-22 67 points. Rebounds 36 (25-11): Heusman 10. Assists 11: Berry 4, Heusman 4. Turnovers 16, steals 10, fouls 22.
Rapid City Christian: Roisum 21, Asbridge 12, Et. Wipf 12, Schlabach 6, Dibona 3, Av. Wipf 3, Glassbrenner 2, Hiedecker 1, Causey 1. 17-56 (6-36) 21-28 61 points. Rebounds 30 (19-11), assists 10, turnovers 17, steals 4, fouls 18.
Chadron 10 20 15 22 -67
RCC 14 22 8 27 -61
Chadron 78, Valentine 43
Chadron: Bartlett 20, Berry 11, Heusman 11, Little Moon 9, Chima 8, Brennan 6, Sayaloune 5, Provance 4, Collins 2, Dunbar 2. 26-57 (14-26) 12-22 78 points. Rebounds 39 (28-11): Berry 7, Chima 7, Bartlett 6. Assists 17: Heusman 5. Turnovers 14, steals 9, blocks 4, fouls 21.
Valentine: Fischer 20, Dorian 17, Lancaster 4, Keller 2. 13-54 (3-14) 14-19 43 points. Rebounds 34 (21-13), assists 7, turnovers 17, steals 8, blocks 2, fouls 16.
Chadron 18 19 26 15 -78
Valentine 10 13 14 6 -43