Girls basketball: Neillsville opens conference season, extends streak to 51

Girls basketball: Neillsville opens conference season, extends streak to 51


Girls basketball: Neillsville opens conference season, extends streak to 51



The powerful Neillsville girls put on a strong showing in their Cloverbelt Conference opener Tuesday night at the Neillsville High school gym but their opponent proved that they make some noise as well.

The Warriors did dispatch the Greyhounds from Loyal 62-33 to make it 51 consecutive Cloverbelt East conference wins (their last conference loss came in the 2009-10 season) but the youthful visitors put up a pretty good fight.

“Loyal comes right after you,” said Neillsville coach John Gaier. “They’re a good scrappy bunch. They certainly weren’t afraid of us. I was impressed with how they played and with their depth. They’re going to be a team to contend with.”

Had not the Greyhounds started so slowly they may have made a game of it. They trailed 14 to 2 at the end of the first quarter and by 21 at the half.As it was, they may have reached at least some of their goals.

“Our goal was to play hard and not play intimidated and I thought we did that,” said Loyal coach Mike Rueth. I thought our kids played really hard. Win, lose or draw, that’s what we wanted.”

The Greyhounds started two freshmen and a sophomore.

But in the end, the senior laden Warriors were just too much. Led by UW- Milwaukee recruit Jenny Lindner, who finished with a game high 20 points, Neillsville, winners of 78 of their last 80 games was, as usual, too much to handle.

“Loyal played aggressive and they got their hands on a lot of balls,” said Lindner. I thought we played pretty well. We struggled on ‘D’ at times, giving up a few more points than usual but overall we did alright.”

“We need to work on closing out on shooters,” said Katelyn Crothers, who scored 16 points. “But we moved the ball well and actually made a lot of shots.”

“I was pretty pleased with the way our kids handled some pressure,” said Gaier.

“We should have some expectations because this is probably the most veteran team we’ve had since I’ve been here. But, expectations don’t matter. It’s how hard you work to get where you want to be.”

Loyal 2 8 11 12 33
Neillsville 14 17 12 19 62

Loyal: Morgan Reinwand 12, Taylre Wilke 9, Karsyn Rueth 7 Jaelynn Young 5.

Neillsville: Jenny Lindner 20, Katelyn Crothers 16, Sierra Bethea 8, Wendy Barth 7, Taylor Henchen 5, Molly Attoe 3, Chelsea Opelt 3. Free Throws: Loyal 6-9. Neillsville 13-22.

3-pointers: Loyal -T.Wilke 3. Neillsville- Lindner 2, Bethea, Henchen, Opelt.

Records: Loyal 1-1, 0-1 Cloverbelt East. Neillsville 2-0, 1-0 Cloverbelt East.


More USA TODAY High School Sports