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THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
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M&O Girls Basketball - Peshtigo Alone as M&O's Top Dog

Peshtigo Stays Undefeated >/b>

The Peshtigo Bulldogs and Wausaukee Rangers both went into last Thursday's M&O Conference match up undefeated and it was the Bulldogs who went on to continue their 2016-17 undefeated conference record with a 54-44 verdict.

Though the Bulldogs won by a 10 point margin the game was a bit closer over the first half. Wausaukee employed a tough defense that came out of the lane with more than their share of turnovers. The tunrovers allowed the Rangers to keep pace with the Bulldogs as they entered the half behind 28-24.

"They're a great young team, said Peshtigo Head Coach Pete Villas. "No doubt they will be near the top of this conference over the next few years. Once they get some playing time under their belts they will undoubtedly be one of the harder teams to beat."

Peshtigo's Claire Neumann and Madi Martin went to work for the first points of the game with Neumann hitting Martin with a well placed pass in the lane for the score. Neumann struck next on a layup before Wausaukee's Courtney Messar made it 4-2.

Maddison Renikow put in a score off a turnover to narrow the lead 7-6 a short while later but was almost immediately answered by Peshtigo's Emma Frederickson on the game's first three pointer.

Joni Polzin put the Bulldogs up 20-12 after a quick score before Wausaukee's Kaelyn Schlies hit for the 20-18 deficit.

With time running out in the first Hannah Swanson put up a behind the arc shot which hit home for a 27-20 Peshtigo lead.

"We had about a two minute spurt but then had a mental break down which cost us," said Wausaukee Head Coach Dave Messar. "We took a rest and suddenly a close game got away from us. You never want to lose but this loss will be a good thing, I think it will redirect us a bit."

Bella Manske ended the half's scoring, bringing the total to 28-24.

From the beginning of the second the momentum began to build for the Bulldogs.

"At half time we talked about slowing the pace down," said Villas. "During the first we built an eight point lead and tried to be the more aggressive team and they started to turn the ball over and cut the lead to four."

A few minutes into the half Neumann came out of the Wausaukee offense with a steal and tossed the pass to Martin for a 36-26 lead.

Shae Tonn brought the total to 49-32 after a hard drive to the hoop. Alexis Ranallo answered for the Rangers with a long range jumper to narrow the lead to 51-37.

Wausaukee was led by Messar with nine and Renikow with eight.

Peshtigo's Martin and Swanson both shared in the game's top scorer honors with 10 points each while Frederickson and Tonn both added nine.

"All year it has been a team effort," said Villas. "That's what has helped us so much this season. With 12 girls on the roster we play 10 deep. These girls come off the bench and make plays for us giving us balance."



Peshtigo Powers Past Crivitz

In their last four games, the Peshtigo Bulldogs have taken on a strong Little Chute squad and the second , third, and now fourth place schools in their conference, and have won them all.  Monday evening, the Bulldogs hosted a talented young Crivitz Wolverines team that sat tied for second place with Wausaukee.  Having been tested early on this season, Peshtigo used their experience to help propel them to a 49-37 victory.

"This five-game stretch has pushed us as a team and has made us better for it. We've had different girls coming in and stepping up in tough situations which will be huge for the stretch run of the season," said Peshtigo Coach Pete Villas.

Crivitz came out in a man-to-man defense but quickly shifted to a zone after a quick 6-0 Peshtigo run.  Madi Martin cashed in on two layups before Ashley Dudka sank both of her free throws that forced a 2-3 zone from the Wolverines.  Dudka then scored on a layup of her own and Shae Tonn did the same as the Bulldogs opened a 10-2 lead with 13:50 to go.  Chloe Gruszynski answered with a triple, Lexi Oyer followed suit by nailing a jumper and Sianna Guns drilled two free throws to cut the lead to 13-9.  Peshtigo stretched the lead again as free throws from Martin and Claire Neumann and a three from Tonn saw the advantage extend to 21-13.  Again, it was the freshman Gruszynski answering the call with a big three-pointer. The Bulldogs pushed the lead to nine just before halftime with two more free throws from Dudka, but Gruszynski's short jumper made the score at the break 26-19 in favor of Peshtigo.

The Bulldogs scored in a hurry to begin the second half as Tonn and Martin cashed in two layups, pushing the lead to 30-16.  Crivitz cut the lead down a bit with layups from Talor Long and Emalee Johnsen, but Peshtigo answered right back with five points.  Tonn continued her big night with another triple and Neumann drilled two from the charity stripe for a 41-30 lead.

Aliya Leslie hit one of two free throws before Oyer came away with a layup to cut the lead down to 44-37 with just over three minutes to play.  This, however, would be as close as the Wolverines would come.  Hannah Swanson drilled a triple to push the lead back to ten and Martin's two free throws iced the game for the Bulldogs.  Peshtigo came away victorious, 49-37.

When asked about the past month of games, Coach Villas said it has been critical, "This was an important win for us.  We've now beat the top teams in the conference the first time around.  We'll have to get better and clean some things up as we enter the second half of the season and head towards the playoffs."

Shae Tonn paced the Peshtigo offense with 13 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and four steals.  Madi Martin chimed in with 11 points, Claire Neumann finished with nine, and Ashley Dudka added six. 

Crivitz was led by Chloe Gruszynski with 13 points, Taylor Bemis notched seven, and Lexi Oyer, Sianna Guns, Emalee Johnsen and Talor Long each scored four.

"I think our defense was fairly solid and we handled the press very well for the most part. We've had some weaknesses exposed that we've already been working on and will continue to work on to help us improve." Coach Villas added,  "We've played well, but I truly feel our best basketball is still ahead of us.  I feel we are starting to come together as a team."



Tigers Cage Cavaliers

Monday night the Gillett Tigers took on the St. Thomas Aquinas Academy Cavaliers.  The matchup of M&O teams saw Gillett come away with a 55-23 victory, thanks, in part, to a balanced offensive attack. 

Faith Sorlie led the Tigers with 11 points, Erin Balthazor scored 10, Taylor Yonker added nine, and Grace Wickman and Sydney Young each pitched in with eight.

For the Cavaliers, Gabrielle Beranek led the team with nine points, Michelle Kallestad added six, and Halle Beranek and Millie Benson each chipped in four.



Cougars Double-Up Cavaliers

Thursday evening the St. Thomas Aquinas Academy Cavaliers traveled to Coleman to take on the Cougars in a matchup of M&O squads.  Coleman defended their home court in decisive fashion with a 58-29 victory over STAA.

Ashlee Mayer scored a game-high 18 points for the Cougars to pace their attack, with Mariana Meissner chipping in with 13 points.  Kailey Klimek finished the contest with nine points and Kyla Manning added six.

STAA's Millie Benson piled in 14 points for the Cavaliers, Gabrielle Beranek pitched in seven and Halle Beranek added five.



Eagles Soar In Win Over Lena

The Suring Eagles nearly doubled up on the visiting Lena Wildcats last Thursday, seeing the win by way of a 43-22 differential.

The Wildcats had no answer to the strong defense which held them to only four first half points. Meanwhile the Eagles offensive attack hit for 20 points to own the lead going into the intermission.

The early spring lead was keyed by a eight point performance Katie Stegeman.

Lena returned fire during the second half, scoring 18 points but it was too little too late as the Eagles continued to dominate the hardwood with another 23 points.

Stegeman led all scorers during the contest with 15 points while teammates Wylee VanBellinger and Greta Sleeter chipped in seven points each.

Lena was led by Kaylee Huberty with five points.



Badgers Survive Thunderhawk Surge

The Niagara Lady Badgers certainly didn't have an easy night against the visiting Oneida Nation Thunderhawks, who fought hard and kept the game close but fell to a six point differential 47-41.

After one half of play the Badgers held the slight edge 20-15. Though they held the Thunderhawks to 15 first half points, it didn't mean that they had complete control of the court.

During the second half the Thunderhawks found an opening and exploited it for 26 points. The Badgers still held the edge though, ousting the Oneida Nation girls by one point over the second to help secure the close victory.

Niagara led by Sarah Nawn was the evening's top scorer, posting 18 points thanks to an exemplary day at the free throw line where she made 11 of her 12. Teammate Jasmine Racine posted 10 while Allison Wells and Alex Gill both got five.

Jashon Killspotted took top scoring honors for the Thunderhawks with 23 points on the evening. She hit on three triples while build up that game leading total.



Wolverines Sneak Past Tigers

Talk about close battles, the Crivitz Wolverines just survived one with the tough and talented girls of Gillett last Thursday. After two halves of ball the Crivitz girls were victorious 47-45.

The Wolverines' Chloe Gruszynski showed her court prowess once again, securing the evening's top scoring honor with 16 points. She was followed by Emalee Johnsen and Taylor Bemis with seven points each. Talor Long chipped in six to the effort.

Gillett was topped by Erin Balthazor with 12 points. Taylor Yonker added 11 while Victoria Loberger found her way to eight points.



Wausaukee Back on Track With Win Over Badgers

After experiencing a hiccup in power that cost them their position among the undefeated ranks of the M&O the Wausaukee Rangers got right back into the swing with a win over the host Niagara Badgers 39-34.

Wausaukee's Alexis Ranallo was key in the Ranger win, finding her way to a game leading 14 points off a couple triples and a triple helping of doubles. She sunk two of her five free throws. Of those 14 points Ranallo bagged 11 in the first half. Both threes were made in the first as well.

Teammate Maddison Renikow pitched in 10 to the effort while Kaelyn Schlies added eight.

Cassandra Gill help to keep the game close with 11 points to lead the Badgers while Maddie West and Jasmine Racine both chipped in six points.



Coleman Posts Win Over Suring

Desperately needing a win to get things moving again, the Coleman Cougars found one on their home court last Monday as they defeated the Suring Eagles 44-42.

Not an easy win by any means. The game was a battle from start to finish. At the half neither team was ready to relinquish the lead , so it was shared 25-25.

Were it not for the exploits of Mariana Meissner the Cougars would certainly not have taken a "W". Meissner bagged a game leading 24 points while teammate Ashlee Mayer added 11 to the total. Kailey Klimek chipped in 24.

Suring was led by Greta Sleeter with 15 and Katie Stegeman with nine points. Blake Seppel got six.



Wildcats Win Thriller Over Thunderhawks

One point was all that separated the Lena Wildcats and the Oneida Nation Thunderhawks last Monday with the Wildcats bringing home the win 37-36.

The close win was keyed by a 13 point performance by Ally Demmith and an 11 point effort by Alayna Peterson.

Yehil Rodriguez led the Thunderhawks with 12 points while Jashon Killspotted chipped in 8.



Gillett Takes Win Over STAA

The Saint Thomas Aquinas Cavaliers ran into a 55 point performance by the Gillett Tigers last Monday, and fell behind it 55-23.

Faith Sorlie led the charge with nine Gillett points over the rest half which helped to give the Tigers a 24-10 lead while Sydney Young and Grace Wickman both found their way to eight points in the second half.

STAA was led by Gabby Beranek with nine points while Gillett was led by Sorlie who secured top scoring honors with 11 points.

Sorlie was followed by Erin Balthazor with 10 points and Taylor Yonker with nine.


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