"You'll never get ahead if you don't take care of what you have." - Doris Waddell, RIP

A historic building on our U of M-Morris campus - morris mn

A historic building on our U of M-Morris campus - morris mn
The multi-ethnic building was the original home of the music department at UMM. (B.W. photo)

Thursday, March 1, 2012

Hancock girls end regular season 19-4

Parkers Prairie 51, Owls 32
The Hancock Owls experienced the rare sting of a loss on Thursday, Feb. 23.
The sting was felt at home where they took on a team they knew would give them all they could handle. That foe: Parkers Prairie (the Panthers).
The PP girls came to Hancock owner of 23 wins and they added No. 24 that night, by a score of 51-32.
Coach Jodi Holleman's Owls came out of the night at 19-4. Those are the numbers they'll tote into the post-season where the debut game is presented tonight (Thursday, March 1).
Tonight's foe is Henning. This is the Class A, Section 6 affair.
Parkers Prairie came out of last Thursday with a 24-1 record.
For Hancock, losing by the relatively wide margin might have been the most discouraging aspect. It wasn't all that bad at halftime when the score stood 17-10. Yes, the margin wasn't all that bad but look at the meager point total: ten. Both teams must have been playing somewhat tentatively.
The game took on a much less restrained complexion the rest of the way. The Owls doubled their point total and added 22 points in the second half. But PP turned on the jets to score 34 second half points, truly taking command.
Starting guard Serandon Bigalke was no-go for much of the game. She was nursing a practice injury (from Wednesday). She gamely took the court for the first half in the 2/23 game. But she had to retire to the bench the rest of the way.
The Panthers were buoyed by two double figures scorers: Micaela Noga and Madison Dorn. Dorn made two 3-point shots.
The Owls failed to strike from three-point range. In total field goals the Owls were 12 of 29, and their stats in 3's were 0/4. They made six of 17 freethrow attempts.
Kendra Schmidgall was a force, leading the squad in points, rebounds and assists. Kendra with her 20 points was followed on that list by: Sami Schmidgall (5), Karol Algarate (2), Olivia Koehl (2), Bigalke (2) and Courtney Greiner (1).
Kendra's team-leading rebound total was 12. Sami Schmidgall and Koehl each grabbed five rebounds. Kendra dished out two assists.
Greiner came away with three steals.

Owls 44, Canby 42
Canby got off to a fast start in front of their home fans, challenging the Hancock girls on Saturday, 2/18. The scoreboard showed a 9-0 score at one point early-on, with Hancock striving to get untracked on this day of a girls/boys doubleheader in Canby Lancer country.
The Canby girls have a won-lost mark way over .500. They also have a particularly talented scorer in their ranks: Riley Nordgaard.
The Lancers may have enjoyed that early 9-0 run but Nordgaard was not going to have a banner first half. The Owl defense held her to seven points in the half.
The Owls were able to get untracked, given a little time, and coach Holleman's squad went on to win narrowly, 44-42.
The Owls in fact fought to get the lead by halftime. They eked out an 18-16 halftime lead and played even with Canby the rest of the way. Each team scored 26 second half points.
Clutch freethrow shooting down the stretch by Kendra Schmidgall and Serandon Bigalke lifted the Owls' fortunes. They were totally poised in front of the Lancer fans.
The Owls showed poise in long-range shooting - certainly a big plus - as they made five of 18 shots from three-point range. They were 12 of 43 in total field goals and a superb 15 of 18 at the freethrow line.
Schmidgall with her 19 points set the pace there. Then we have Olivia Koehl with 11 points, Bigalke with nine and Courtney Greiner with five.
Greiner worked the boards for nine rebounds. Karol Algarate collected seven rebounds, and there were three Owls each with five: Schmidgall, Koehl and Bigalke.
Bigalke showed deft passing to accumulate six assists. Three Owls each had two steals: Greiner, Koehl and Algarate.
The Lancers' Nordgaard may have been held back in the first half but her talents were most notable in the second. This talented Lancer finished with 22 points, making one "3" along the way. Given her persistence, the Owls needed all their freethrows (and those five 3-pointers to be sure).
The Owls came out of the night at 19-3 in overall. Canby's record: 18-6.

Boys basketball: Owls 61, Canby 60
Saturday, Feb. 18, was a banner day for Hancock hoops on the road. The Owls provided lots of entertainment in both parts of the boys/girls doubleheader in Canby.
The Owls won both parts, succeeding by close scores. The boys' story was a 61-60 Hancock victory. (The margin in the girls game was two.)
Things didn't look too encouraging at halftime. My, the Owls were down by four points against a Canby team that had a slightly better record (and presumably home court advantage). The halftime score: 30-26.
The Lancers, sitting at one game over .500, wanted to stay on the right side of that mark. The Owls, striving to climb toward .500, showed a firm resolve toward that end in the second half.
Jordan Miller and Taylor Holleman showed prime scoring punch. Miller would flirt with 30 points on the day.
The Owls carved out a memorable 61-60 win. They came out of the weekend with an 8-11 record.
They made exactly half their field goal tries: 25 of 50. They were efficient in 3's making four of ten. Austin Steege made two 3-pointers while Holleman and Bryan Shaw each made one. The Owls were seven of 18 in freethrows.
Michells Algarate led in rebounds with nine followed by Holleman with seven. Collin Cunningham dished out six assists followed by Holleman with four.
Holleman, Shaw and Miller each had two steals.
Miller and Holleman led the scoring list with 28 and 18 points respectively. Shaw came through with seven, Steege with six and Cunningham with two.
It was a day for the Owls to hoot!
A personal note: This is the first writing I've done on Hancock boys basketball in six years. I have missed it greatly, but life throws you its curves sometimes. Some of the players here still seem like "little kids" in my mind. They're growing up!
- Brian Williams - morris mn minnesota - bwilly73@yahoo.com

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