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Overtime victory sends Lady Bulldogs home; Hilltoppers move forward in bracket

By Kelsie Hoitomt

GLENWOOD CITY— The Boyceville girls basketball team traveled to Glenwood City last Tuesday night for the first Regional contest of the 2015 tournament season.

A three by senior Abbey Bird as the buzzer rang in the fourth quarter tied the score at 37-37 and sent the game into overtime before the Toppers ran away with a 44-40 victory.

In the opening seconds of OT, senior Jen Kopacz stole the ball, ran down the court for a lay up and was fouled on the play.

She made the shot and then dropped in a free throw. That was the dagger as the Bulldogs trailed by three and never recovered.

The contest started out incredibly slow. The Toppers trailed by two with the score at 4-2 after the first quarter.

Shyanne Marlett was not ending her senior season by being on the bench, she played all four quarters for her Bulldog team and scored one of the first two baskets in the opening minutes.

Cassie Malean was the other player to make a shot for the first four total points.

In the second quarter, the Bulldogs stayed consistent on their offense with four more, which were scored solely from Marlett who had a double and then was fouled twice and made two buckets.

The Toppers secured a lead for the first time with 11 points from a double from Maya Petersen, Gabby Peterson and Moriah Kuehndorf. Megan Samens made a shot of her own and then two free throws and Jenesa Klinger had a free throw as well.

The Toppers led 13-8 at the half and then lost it in the third quarter when the Bulldogs came out swinging after the break.

Morgan Kuhn was quiet in the first half and then exploded with two back to back treys. Then she drove one in for two before she backed off and stood behind the arc for her third three.

The Bulldogs scored 19 points in the third with 11 from Kuhn herself. Bird dropped in a three as well for her first basket of the night and then Malean had a double and Lexi Peterson sank a free throw.

The Toppers trailed by six after posting eight points by a three from Kuehndorf, a double and a free throw from Kopacz and a double from Morgan Kadinger.

The score was 27-21 going into the fourth quarter. Those last eight minutes were nothing but a free throw shooting contest that had the Toppers prevailing to close the scoring gap.

19 free throws were attempted from the home team and the Bulldogs had 12 shot attempts on their side.

Eight shots were scored by the Topper team with four from Kopacz, three from Kuehndorf and one from Rachel Klatt.

The Bulldogs’ final percentage was a bit higher with seven of 12 made with three from Peterson, two from Kuhn and one each from Madysn Riek and Malean.

The Toppers finished with 16 points scored with an additional two point basket from Klatt and Kadinger and two from Peterson.

The only other baskets the Bulldogs had that wasn’t from the foul line was Bird’s game changing three.

The crowd went crazy when that basket bounced off the glass and fell through the hoop. The momentum shifted however after Kopacz scored the three opening points.

Kuehndorf would push in her second double of the night and Klinger swished in two free throws for the Hilltopper win.

The Bulldogs scored three points in the OT with two free throws from Kuhn and one from Malean.

As a team they finished with 13 total free throws out of 28 attempts and they had six doubles and five triples.

The Toppers made just 15 free throws out of 31 attempts and they had 13 doubles and one trey.

Kuehndorf and Kopacz led in points with ten each; Moriah made two doubles, one trey and three free throws and Jen had two doubles and six free throws.

Peterson followed with six from her three doubles, Klatt had two doubles and a free throw for five, Samens had one double and two free throws for four and Kadinger had two doubles for four. Klinger finished with her three free throws and Petersen had one double.

Kuhn led the game in points with 15 from her three treys, four free throws and one double. Marlett followed for the Bulldog team with eight from her three doubles and two free throws.

Bird and Malean each had six; Abbey with the two treys and Cassie with two doubles and two free throws. Peterson had four points from four free throws and Riek had her one free throw.

“I was very proud of the team for their play,” began coach Jolene Bird. “We had many opportunities and played with 110 percent effort.  Through all the adversity during the season they remained strong and competitive.  We talked about being relentless and if we were going to go down we would go down swinging and they truly accomplished that goal.”

The Toppers win advanced them Friday night’s contest in Colfax against the number one seeded Vikings.