LeMieux’s season-high 22 points helps Cowboys top TigersNEW ENGLAND — The Killdeer girls basketball team’s season has been nothing short of erratic and underwhelming. Morgan LeMieux and the Cowboys took a step toward changing that Monday night against New England.
By: Dustin Monke, The Dickinson Press
NEW ENGLAND — The Killdeer girls basketball team’s season has been nothing short of erratic and underwhelming.
Morgan LeMieux and the Cowboys took a step toward changing that Monday night against New England.
The 6-foot sophomore had a season-high 22 points and nine rebounds as Killdeer built a big lead in the second quarter and quickly quelled the Tigers’ late rallies to secure a 54-41 victory in a Region 7 game at the New England High School gymnasium.
“It’s a good confidence booster for a lot of us,” LeMieux said.
Killdeer (5-9) entered having lost three of its last four games, all non-district affairs, and were searching for a pick-me-up before a crucial District 14 game Thursday at Hazen.
Cowboys head coach Sara Doe said they got what they wanted.
“It was big,” Doe said. “We’ve played some tough games where we just haven’t played to our potential. It’s nice to see that we’re regrouping.”
After letting Killdeer jump out to a 9-0 lead, New England began chipping away and cut the deficit to 16-14 midway through the second quarter.
But, LeMieux and the Cowboys didn’t get flustered.
LeMieux scored seven points during a 13-3 run to end the first half and put Killdeer ahead 29-17 at the halftime break.
“We have really good chemistry,” LeMieux said. “We trust each other with what we’re going to do, and we’re starting to read each other better.”
Paced by sophomore and leading scorer Gabbi Hanson, who comes off the bench, the Tigers (4-9) cut the Cowboys’ lead to nine twice in both the third and fourth quarters.
Killdeer would let New England get any closer though.
“I thought our girls played a little more tentative than they have in the past few games,” New England head coach Jason Jung said. “The other thing is our shooting. We could not hit anything. The last couple games, our shooting has been good — especially our outside shooting. Tonight it just wasn’t there.”
Hanson was the lone exception. The 5-foot-8 forward made four 3-pointers and had 14 points to lead the Tigers, who return to District 13 play Thursday at Hettinger-Scranton.
“We just kept getting behind too many times and we just didn’t have enough offensive firepower to come back,” Jung said.
Height played a big factor, too.
Killdeer, with three players standing over 6-foot, outrebounded the smaller Tigers 42-26.
Cowboys senior Megan Klein, playing through knee troubles, had 12 points and 14 rebounds. Heidi Ottmar added 12 points and seven steals.
“It was a feel-good win,” Doe said. “The girls felt they did a lot of things right, and they did. They’ve kind of had a little slump. We’re hoping that they’ve worked through some of the things.
“Things will start looking better for us.”
Killdeer 14 29 44 54
NE 10 17 31 41
K: Morgan LeMieux 22, Megan Klein 12, Heidi Ottmar 12, Ashley Brew 4, Kelsey Knutson 4.
NE: Gabbi Hanson 14, Hannah Nordby 9, Erin Volk 5, Bryanna Rasch 4, Taylor Hewson 4, India Fitterer 3, Kristen Neprash 2.
3-pointers: K 2 (Ottmar 2), NE 5 (Hanson 4, Fitterer 1). Free throws: K 8-12, NE 6-12. Total fouls: K 12, NE 12.