Kimberly’s Frankie Wurtz (3) attempts to block Oshkosh North’s Alexis Hansen’s (31) shot December 5, 2014 playing at Oshkosh North High School.
Although it’s early in the season, the Oshkosh North girls basketball team knew they would have a tough time with the defending Fox Valley Association champion Kimberly.
And they had the toughest time containing Frankie Wurtz and scoring against the Papermaker defense.
A 5-foort-8 senior guard, Wurtz scored the first 11 points for the Papermakers, and the Spartans simply could not recover from the quick start, dropping a 43-12 decision to Kimberly at Oshkosh North on Friday night.
Along with the hot start by Wurtz, who finished with 20 points, the Spartans had a very hard time scoring against the aggressive, ball-hawking defense of the Papermakers. Oshkosh North scored just seven points in the first half, while committing 10 turnovers.
The Spartans never scored more than four points in any one quarter, and only tallied one point in the final stanza.
“That is a senior-led team in Kimberly,” said Oshkosh North head coach Rachel Biertzer. “They are projected to finish first in the conference and the play very aggressive. We have to work harder to improve. I think there is a lot to gain from this game where we have to get better.”
Employing a 1-3-1 zone defense against the Papermakers, the Spartans actually did fairly well on the defensive side of the ball – except for containing Wurtz.
The UW-Green Bay signee hit four of her first five shots, three of them 3-pointers, to stoke Kimberly to an 11-4 first quarter lead. As a matter of fact, Wurtz outscored Oshkosh North by herself in both the first and third (6-4) quarters.
“She is just an outstanding player,” said Kimberly head coach Troy Cullen. “She can knock it down from the perimeter, and she can attack the rim. She is playing at a high level and the bottom line is when she is playing well we are very difficult to beat.”
Offensively, the Spartans were led by Sammy Buerger. The sophomore guard scored 5 points, while senior Megan Pett chipped in four.
“I thought defensively we did alright tonight,” Biertzer said. “We gave them some havoc, had a lot of deflections, but then we have to convert on the other end and be more consistent over the course of 32 minutes and get on the same page with execution. Kimberly is a good team; that take you out of what you are trying to do and they are very mentally tough. We have to learn to match that.”