The Chadron High girls’ basketball team closed out the 2020 portion of its schedule by playing well while winning the championship at the Rotary Club’s Holiday Classic in the Middle School Gym last week.
After losing four straight games, the Lady Cardinals breezed past Hemingford 52-32 in the opening go-round, then stifled Valentine 43-19 in the title tilt. It was Chadron’s sixth championship in the 10-year history of the classic.
“We wrapped the Old Year on a high note,” Coach Jonn McLain said. “The players did a nice job in both games. I thought we shot the ball better than we had in the previous three games and we had a standout defensive effort versus Valentine. I think if the girls defend like that, we can compete in a lot of games even when the shots aren’t falling.”
The Cardinals tallied 16 points in each of the first three periods against Hemingford while building a decisive 48-27 lead. Hemingford hit four of its first six field goal attempts to go ahead 8-2, but Chadron had a 16-12 margin at the end of the first quarter and limited the LadyCats to just two points in the second frame.
Chadron buried eight 3-pointers, three apiece by juniors Macey Daniels and Abbie Seymour, who finished with 11 and nine points, respectively. Meanwhile on the inside, freshman Demi Ferguson tallied a game-high 14 points and grabbed eight rebounds.
Sophomores led Hemingford. Catherine Bryner scored 12 points and Avery Davies 10. Five others had two apiece.
Although Jacey Garrett and Daniels each sank 3-pointers in the opening quarter, neither team “burned the nets” in the game with Valentine until the Cardinals tallied 18 points in the fourth to seal their runaway victory.
The Cards’ only senior, Anika Burke, led all scorers with 11 points on four of eight shooting from the field, including a trey. She also grabbed a team-high nine rebounds. Garrett, Ferguson and Daniels all finished with eight points for the winners.
Garrett also claimed six rebounds and had six steals.
Senior Izzy Salters led Valentine with six points.
In summarizing the Cardinals’ performance, McLain said more players are contributing, and the girls are figuring out their roles and how to take advantage of situations.
“We’re still learning and have lots of things we can improve upon,” the coach noted. “We are capable of playing good basketball.”
Chadron 52, Hemingford 32
Hemingford--Catherine Bryner 12, Avery Davies 10, Destiny Hanson 2, Kambree Walker 2, Mikayla Kumpf 2, Elizabeth Meyer 2, Aly Turek 2. Totals: 15 2-8 32 points.
Chadron--Demi Ferguson 14, Macey Daniels 11, Abbie Seymour 9, Makinley Fuller 6, Anika Burke 5, Jacey Garrett 3, Laney Klemke 2, Micaiah Fuller 2. Totals: 19 (8) 6-13 52 points.
Hemingford 12 2 13 5 ---32
Chadron 16 16 16 4 ---52
3-pointers: Chad--Daniels 3, Seymour 3, Garrett 1, Burke 1.
Chadron 43, Valentine 19
Valentine--Izzy Salters 7, Malika Monroe 5, Haley Hesse 3, Kinsey Buechle 2, Delaney Robinson 2. Totals: 7 (1) 4-14 19 points.
Chadron--Anika Burke 11, Jacey Garrett 8, Demi Ferguson 8, Macey Daniels 8, Micaiah Fuller 4, Jaleigh McCartney 2, Makinley Fuller 2. Totals: 17 (5) 4-7 43 points.
Valentine 6 5 2 6 ----19
Chadron 9 10 6 18 ----43
3-pointers: Val--Salters 1. Chad--Garrett 2, Ferguson 1, Daniels 1, Burke 1