By Cara L. Dempski
BOYCEVILLE — The Lady Bulldogs were no longer winless in the conference going into last week, but that did not mean their road was suddenly easier.
The Boyceville squad opened its two-game stretch at home January 23 against Elk Mound, currently in third place in the Dunn-St. Croix, with a 58-20 loss to the visiting Mounders.
[emember_protected] Coach Jolene Bird and the Bulldogs went back to work to prepare for a Friday-night showdown against Elmwood/Plum City three nights later.
The January 26 matchup, played at Plum City High School, was another tough trip for the Lady Bulldogs. They trailed by just seven points at halftime, but were bested 56-39 for the loss.
Boyceville was 1-9 in the D-SC and 2-14 at the start of this week. They traveled to Chetek-Weyerhaeuser January 29, and are hosting their annual “Coaches versus Cancer” contest February 1 with a game against Glenwood City.
The Bulldogs will travel to Mondovi February 6 to open the second-to-last week of the regular season.
Coach Bird knew coming into this season that Elk Mound would again be one of the conference’s toughest teams to beat.
The Mounders returned more than a few of their starters from last season, have an experienced bench, and are playing reasonably well for the moment.
On the other hand, Bird lost her five starters to graduation after last season, and last week started five sophomores at Colfax. Youth can bring energy, but also is a telling sign of a lack of experience.
The Bulldogs played hard against Elk Mound January 23 at home, but could not manage more than 20 points, while the visiting squad put together 58. The loss dropped the Boyceville girls to 1-8 in the conference, just one game ahead of Spring Valley.
Sophomore Rachel Prestrud led scoring in the first half, picking up all eight of her points in the first 18 minutes including the Bulldogs highlight of the evening – a half-court basket as time expired in the first half.
The Boyceville squad picked up just 13 points in the opening half and trailed by 17 points at halftime.
The Mounders held the Bulldogs in check during the second half, limiting the team to just seven points while gaining another 28 of their own for the eventual 58-20 win.
A pair of Mounders’ scoring runs – one in the first half and another in the second – spelled doom for the Bulldogs.
Leading just 6 to 2, Elk Mound embarked on a 14-0 spurt that helped it lead 30-13 at the break.
But thing got worse for Boyceville in the second half as its offense all but disappeared while Elk Mound’s went into overdrive. The Lady Mounders enjoyed a 22-0 advantage over an 11:19 span that all but put the game well out of the Bulldogs grasp.
Tyra Kostman led the Boyceville team effort with nine points, while Prestrud was right behind with her eight. Taylor Grambow contributed two with a field goal, and Naomi Hillman hit the first of two shots from the line.
The highest individual score for the game belonged to Elk Mound’s Allie Weber, who scored 13.
ELK MOUND 58, BOYCEVILLE 20
Elk Mound………………………..30 28 — 58
Boyceville…………………………13 7 — 20
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-T)
Elk Mound (19-15-10-58) — M. Borofka 2-2-1-7, H. Cedarblade 1-2-0-5, A. Weber 4-3-2-13, B. Plaszcz 1-0-0-2, A. Plaszcz 0-0-1-0, H. Blaskowski 1-0-2-2, V. Fasbender 1-0-3-3, T. Schaefer 0-0-1-0, M. Tamke 1-0-0-2, M. Radtke 3-4-0-10, K. Bridges 0-3-0-3, C. Sweeney 5-1-0-11.
Boyceville (8-1-20-20) — R. Prestrud 3-0-1-8, E. Ouellette 0-0-3-0, N. Hillman 0-1-2-1, H. Johnson 0-0-4-0, T. Kostman 4-0-4-9, T. Grambow 1-0-5-2, A. Evenson 0-0-1-0.
EM — M. Borofka 1, H. Cedarblade 1, A. Weber 2, V. Fasbender 1; B — R. Prestrud 2, T. Kostman 1.
Friday night was another hard one for the Bulldog ladies, as their road trip to Plum City did not end quite how they hoped January 26.
Despite the 56-39 loss, coach Jolene Bird saw some things she liked.
“Although the outcome didn’t end how we wanted, and the margin ended larger than we wanted, we did some good things offensively,” she said. “We struggled more on the defensive end with their size inside, and put them on the line too many times.”
The Lady Bulldogs were down 28-21 at the half, but then were outscored 28-18 in the second half of the contest.
The loss aside, sophomore Rachel Prestrud had a big night, scoring 20 points over eight field goals. Emma Ouellette picked up nine, Hannah Johnson scored eight, and Tyra Kostman tacked up the final two points.
Elmwood/Plum City’s top score belonged to Lexi Diesing, who scored 18 points.
BOYCEVILLE 39, ELMWOOD/PLUM CITY 56
Boyceville…………………………21 18 — 39
Elmwood/Plum City……………28 28 — 56
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-T)
Boyceville (15-2-21-39) — R. Prestrud 8-0-1-20, E. Ouellette 3-2-2-9, A. Bloom 0-0-5-0, N. Hillman 0-0-3-0, H. Johnson 3-0-4-8, T. Kostman 1-0-3-2, T. Grambow 0-0-3-0.
Elmwood/Plum City (20-14-13-56) — A. Peterson 2-1-3-6, J. Martin 0-0-1-0, K. Feuker 3-4-3-10, T. Whipple 1-2-1-4, R. Rupakus 2-0-1-4, L. Diesing 8-2-0-18, E. Funk 1-4-4-6, H. Feuker 3-1-0-7.
B — R. Prestrud 4, E. Ouellette 1, H. Johnson 2; EPC — A. Peterson 1, R. Rupakus 1. [/emember_protected]