HASTINGS – It was the Hastings Tigers that earned the B7 Sub-district title over Holdrege Thursday night as impressive shooting led the way to a 51-41 victory. Click here for the broadcast.
The Tigers came off an 11 point victory on Wednesday night over Lexington, and were the #1 seed at in the B7 Sub-district earning the right to host all sub-district contests. The Dusters entered as the #2 seed and had downed McCook the night prior to match up with Hastings.
As the game began, Hastings started heating up early with shots knocking down, starting with Kaitlyn Laux hitting a three pointer to open the contest. Brooklyn Berney for Holdrege responded on the opposite end with a jumper. Hastings began to show off their impressive shot selection, continuing their opening quarter with a drive and score from Dacey Sealey and a triple from McKinsley Long. Holdrege would continue to respond in short bursts, as Taylor Wiser and McKenna Ortgiesen both had three pointers. Laux added another triple and Long had a follow up bucket, giving the Tigers a 13-8 advantage at the end of the first.
Defense clamped up for both sides as Holdrege looked to prevent more big shots from falling, but couldn’t find a groove offensively in the second quarter only tallying 8 points. Laux continued to find her spot beyond the arc and added another three pointer, as she had help from her teammate Long adding two more of her own three point connections. Holdrege’s Alexis Bliven was able to add 4 points of her own but the Dusters were outpaced 11-8 and trailed 24-16 at the end of the first half.
As Holdrege came out of the locker room entering the second half, the Dusters began their run to fight back into the contest. It began with confident shots coming from Megan Belgum, as she immediately started to attack the basket and find more open looks. Belgum dropped 9 points in the quarter, and was joined by Bliven who continually attacked the hoop and was fouled repeatedly with attempts coming at the free-throw line. Bliven added 8 in the quarter. Holdrege’s defense was able to contain the normal barrage of shots, but still allowed two more three pointers to strike as the Tigers never allowed Holdrege to bring the game within less than two points. The Tigers continued their lead heading into the fourth, but Holdrege was right on Hastings’ tail trailing 35-33.
The wheels fell off in the fourth quarter for the Dusters, as their impressive third quarter stalled heading into the final moments as Holdrege was upended 16-8 in the final 8 minutes. Hastings’ Sealey was the main catalyst, showing aggressive drives and late passes to open up for her teammates and earn herself 9 points int he quarter. As Holdrege ran out of steam, not able to find success on shot attempts, the fouls began to mount up giving Hastings the advantage and eventually the win. The Tigers won 51-41 and await for their matchup on Saturday with Elkhorn North in the District Final.
The Tigers improve to 12-10 on the year and earn their 2nd win in a row after 5 straight losses. Hastings had contributions from Laux with 15 points leading all scorers, Sealey and Long finished with 13 points, Hilgendorf had 9 points, and Libby Landgren tallied a point.
Holdrege falls to 11-10 on the season and finish behind the top 16 in power points to conclude their season. The Dusters had contributions from Belgum with 13 points, Bliven finished with 12 points, Ortgiesen tallied 9 points, Taylor Wiser had a three pointer, and Avery Hurlbert and Berney finished with 2 each.