Class B No. 3 Northwest advances past Dusters

Grand Island Northwest's Alec Waters puts up a shot as Holdrege's Andrew Maaske, left, Luke Ackerman, middle, and Dillon Hixson defend in the first period of Tuesday's central conference tournament game at Northwest High School in Grand Island. Northwest won 62-47.


GRAND ISLAND -- Class B No. 3 Northwest got off to a bit of a slow start, but the Vikings turned it on in the second quarter and went on to a 62-47 victory over Holdrege in a Central Conference Tournament game at Northwest.

Northwest (15-1) will face Crete in a tournament semifinal at 6 p.m. Friday at Aurora.

Holdrege (6-11) got off to a good start and held an 8-4 lead with less than two minutes left in the first quarter, but that’s when the Vikings started to get the offense going.

“Early in the game we were doing what we wanted to do defensively, and we were actually doing what we wanted to do offensively,” Northwest coach Ryan Rathke said. “We were getting the ball inside and we just weren’t converting shots early in the game. We just said, hey, we just have to keep getting it in. I knew those shots would start to fall and they did.”

Northwest outscored the Dusters 28-7 the remainder of the first half, including a 21-5 run in the second quarter. Senior Trevor Kraft scored nine of his game-high 17 points in the second period of play.

The Vikings got a nice high-low post game going with Kraft being a beneficiary of a number of passes from teammates like Darrek McNelis, Casey Dahlkoetter and Garret Koepp.

“He had a good game, as did all our post players,” Rathke said. “We’re fortunate to have four post players that can score inside, and then we have the good guard play and have good shooters. We want to be hard to guard.”

Rathke said the Vikings continue to try and fine tune their offense.

“We still work on our offense hard every day in practice,” Rathke said. “We can still get better at it and our kids are getting better. The high-low game is a big part of the offense and continues to get better which is good to see.”

Northwest 62, Holdrege 47

HOLDREGE (6-11)

Kruetzer 2-3 4-4 8, Karlson 2-7 2-2 6, Ackerman 2-11 1-2 6, Hamling 1-5 2-4 4, VanEperen 2-6 1-2 5, Hunke 0-1 0-0 0, Hixson 4-5 0-0 8, Maaske 3-4 3-3 10, Hosier 0-2 0-0 0. Totals 16-44 13-17 47.

NORTHWEST (15-1)

Waters 3-7 1-3 7, Larsen 3-8 1-2 8, Rouzee 2-5 0-0 4, Kraft 7-10 3-3 17, McNelis 4-6 0-0 8, Bockmann 2-5 0-0 6, Havranek 0-2 0-0 0, Koepp 3-5 2-4 8, Dahlkoetter 2-2 0-0 4, Willis 0-0 0-0 0, Daws 0-0 0-0 0, Elsworth 0-0 0-0 0, Brown 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 26-51 7-12 62

Holdrege .............................10 5 12 20—47

Northwest ........................11 21 19 11—62

3-point goals—Holdrege 2-11 (Maaske 1-1, Ackerman 1-8, VanEperen 0-2, Karlson 0-3). Northwest 3-12 (Bockmann 204, Larsen 1-2, Waters 0-1, McNelis 0-1, Havranek 0-2). Fouled out—None. Rebounds—Holdrege 25 (Maaske 5, Hamling 5). Northwest 31 (Rouzee 4, Dahlmoetter 4). Turnovers—Holdrege 13, Northwest 11. Total fouls—Holdrege 14, Northwest 12. Technicals—None.

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