Lady Cougars Down Lady Knights in First Round of East Husker Conference

By Clare Wiltse, Sports Contributor 

There was a lot of whooping going on in the locker room after the Lady Cougars picked up a first round win in the East Husker Conference Tournament over Oakland-Craig.  It was a different story the previous night  when the Lady Knights claimed a sixteen point win in a regular season game.


The (9-11) Lady Knights won 51-35 on their home court.  On a neutral court at Howells the Lady Cougars raised their record to 12-6 with a 48-43 win.


“The girls really wanted this game,” said Coach Haskell.  “After the way we played last night, we were determined to do a better job.  We couldn’t make a shot on Thursday while O-C was hot.  We shot so much better tonight and our defense denied their jump shots tonight.”


On Thursday the Knight made seven of ten shots in the first quarter.  Brianne Haskell provided all the Cougar points during the period. Her three pointer gave Northeast their only lead at 5-4.  O-C got the jump on LDNE with a 13-2 run when they made five shots in a row and tacked on two free shots.


Mariah Jessen scored early in the second period, but it would be the only basket of the period for Northeast.  Northeast made only one of six shots in the quarter.  They made no trips to the free throw line.  Oakland-Craig took a 27-12 half time lead.


Northeast got off to a 8-2 start after half with a trey by Lexie Bacon followed by a deuce and trey from Brianne Haskell.  The Cougars were back to a single digit deficit, 29-20, but their shooting cooled as the managed only a single free shot in the remaining of the period. Seven shots and three tries drew iron as O-C moved to a 39-21 lead at the end of three periods.


Northeast managed to outscore O-C by two points in the final stanza.   Two threes by Haskell  and a pair of baskets by Jessen plus an bucket by Abby Peterson  made for 5 for 11 shooting.


Brianne Haskell had a game-high 18 points.  Oakland -Craig had three in double figures with Brynn Charling leading with 13 and Shannon Pille adding 11 and Emma Reinert 10.


Northeast had one bright spot on defense.  Mariah Jessen had 8  shot blocks.  This places her at number five on the Northeast Top Ten.


LDNE              10        2          9          14        -35

O-C                 17        10        12        12        -51


2pt       3pt       FT        Rb        F          TP

Wakeley           0          0          0/2       1          0          0

Haskell 3          4          0/0       2          3          18

Collins              0          0          0/0       2          1          0

Bacon              0          1          2/3       2          1          5

Jessen              3          0          1/3       5          3          7

Peterson           0          0          0/1       5          2          3

Totals               7-20     5-18     3-8       17        12        35

O-C                 10-39   2-7       7-11     29        10        51


It was a different story the next night.  Darcey Simonsen was back in the lineup after a precautionary decision kept her out the night before.  Darcey cleared concussion tests and her defense and rebounding made a big difference in the final results.


Northeast bolted to a 7-0 lead with Peterson, Haskell, and Jessen scoring.  In the mean time, the defense forced the Knight to the parameter where they missed four shots and turned the ball over four times.  It took them five minutes to score on a free throw.


A bucket by Jessen followed by a trey by Wakeley got a 12-4 lead for Northeast.  A pair of baskets by Bures  made it 12-8 at the quarter.


The defense contested every shot by the Knights in the second period.  They made only two of ten shots.  Free throws kept them in the game with six makes out of ten tries.  Mariah Jessen was the target of their attack as she drew her third foul during the period.


Northeast extended the lead to five points at the half.  Simonsen scored twice.  Haskell made four free shots.  Peterson had the last three points of the half as LDNE went the lockers leading 23-18.


Northeast moved to a nine point lead after intermission, but O-C was going to make a game of it.  They closed on an 8-2 run to make it a three point game, 33-30.


Darcey Simonsen started the scoring in the fourth period, but the Knights came back with a lay-in by Bures and a trey by Pille with 4:46 left which tied the game at 35.


Brianne Haskell worked her magic in the lane and  put the Cougars back into the lead, but Oakland got a goal from Charling and free throw from Pille to take 38-37 lead with 3:06 to play. Darcey Simonsen was good for two from the stripe as Northeast regained the lead.


With 2:37 left Haskell made one of two free shots.  Twenty seconds later Pille popped in a deuce to tie the game, 40-40.  Haskell answered with dagger of a three pointer with 1:54 to play.  The Cougars would never trail after that.


The Cougars rebounded a missed free shot on  O-C’s next offensive possession and worked the clock down to under a minute before missing a shot.  Snader connected on a long two point shot ‘and the Knights hoped to cash in by  fouling.  Abby Peterson made two free tries for 45-42 score with 44 seconds to play.  Simonsen and Pille traded points before Lexie Bacon sealed the win  with two free shots with 3 seconds left.


It was a team win for the Cougars as they got three players in double figures and six players who scored.  Brianne Haskell led the way with 14while assisting 7 times.  Darcey Simonsen had 11 and Abby Peterson put in a career-best 10 points.


On the defensive side Brianne Haskell and Darcy Simonsen  combined to keep the Knights’ top scorer, Brynn Charling six point below her average on 3 for 13 shooting.  O-C made 15 of 45 shots while Northeast made 16 of 39.


The Cougars move on to face Howells-Dodge in a quarter final game at Stanton.  The Lady Jaguars took a one point win over Northeast in December.


O-C                 8          10        12        13        -43

LDNE              12        11        10        15        -48



2pt       3pt       FT        Rb        F          TP

Simonsen          4          0          3/7       6          3          11

Wakeley           0          1          0/0       3          4          3

Haskell 3          1          5/6       4          4          14

Collins              0          0          0/0       0          0          0

Bacon              1          0          2/3       4          1          4

Jessen              3          0          0/0       4          4          6

Peterson           3          0          4/7       7          1          10

Totals               14-33   2-6       14-23   28        17        48

O-C                 13-39   2-6       11-22   31        19        43


About katcountryhub
I am a graduate of Northeast Community College with a degree in journalism. I am married to Jeff Gilliland. We have two grown children, Justin and Whitney and four grandchildren, Grayce, Grayhm, Charli and Penelope. I will be covering Lyons, Decatur, Bancroft and Rosalie and am hoping to expand my horizons as time progresses!

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