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Gilman buzz by Hornets in second half, fall to Warriors


Emma Grunseth led Gilman’s rebounding dominance with 14 and added 20 points for a monster double-double Tuesday that led the Gilman Pirates to a 69-62 win at Colby.

The Pirates’ dominance in the paint led to a 17-6 scoring advantage at the free throw line, a 14-point advantage in two-point field goals and a significant 4317 edge in rebounding. That included 14 offensive rebounds that led to some key second-chance points.

The Pirates overcame 24 turnovers and took charge down the stretch, breaking away from a 41-41 tie with 12 minutes left.

“These girls played their hearts out,” Gilman head coach Tammy Weir said. “I am very proud of how they kept their heads up and moved on after making a mistake. They just kept playing ball.”

The Pirates also got a double-double from senior Emma Warner, who scored 12 points, grabbed 11 boards and dished out five assists in the win, which puts Gilman at 1-1 in its current stretch of three straight road games against the top three teams in the Eastern Cloverbelt Conference. That stretch will end tonight, Thursday, with a rescheduled game at Loyal (8-1, 11-3).

The Pirates got a bit of a break with one of Colby’s top players, Lexi Underwood, sitting out with an ankle injury. They still had to contend with the highscoring trio of Emma Peavey, Hailey Voelker and Lexi Krebsbach, who combined to score 58 of Colby’s 62 points.

A back-and-forth first half featured five 3-pointers from Colby, including two each from Peavey and Krebsbach and 10 points from Voelker. But Gilman offset that with some nice offensive balance. Six players scored in the half, led by seven each from inside presences Emma Grunseth and Tatum Weir and a key five points from sophomore guard Madisyn James. Colby led 29-27 at the break.

Colby nudged out to a couple of fourpoint leads early in the second half, with the last one being 40-36. The Pirates went on a mini run to tie it at 41-41 and then took the lead for good. Warner made four shots from the field in the half, Emma Grunseth scored 13 more and Grace Grunseth did her damage, scoring 12 of her 14 points, mostly from the free throw line.

The Pirates were 15 of 21 from the stripe in the second half and 17 of 26 overall.

Grace Grunseth added five rebounds, four assists and three steals in the win. Aubrey Syryczuk hit a second-half 3-pointer, went three for four from the line and finished with eight points, four rebounds and four assists. Weir ended up with nine points, seven rebounds and three blocked shots. James finished with six points and tied Warner for team honors with five assists.

Peavey went five of 11 from long range and scored 26 points for the Hornets, who fell to 8-3 in the conference and 10-5 overall. Voelker had 18 points, five steals and four assists. Krebsbach finished with four 3-pointers and 14 points.

Gilman made 20 of 39 two-point shots compared to Colby’s 13 of 38. The Hornets were 10 of 23 from long range, while the Pirates were four for 11.

“The girls played hard,” Tammy Weir said. “They ran the court and played for the full 36 minutes.”

After tonight’s game in Loyal, Gilman (6-4, 9-4) returns to its home court Friday to host the Spencer Rockets in conference play. The Pirates will take a non-conference trip to Rib Lake on Monday before hosting Granton Tuesday and Columbus Catholic on Feb. 6.

All games tip at 7:15 p.m.

Neillsville 58, Gilman 40

Gilman had a huge edge at the free throw line, but the host Neillsville Warriors offset it with a big advantage from the 3-point line in their 58-40 win over the Pirates Thursday.

Neillsville’s struggles in 3-point shooting (three of 26) were a big reason Gilman was able to pull off a 51-50 upset win over the Warriors back on Dec. 5.

But this time, Neillsville (10-1, 13-2) hit nine of 19 triples, while Gilman was just one for 13 as the Warriors got their revenge and kept their spot atop the Eastern Cloverbelt Conference.

The Pirates were aggressive and had success inside, outrebounding Neillsville 42-19 and getting to the free throw line 21 times, making 15. Neillsville was just one for two. Of Gilman’s rebounds, 23 were offensive.

But the 24-point edge in outside shooting ultimately was too much for Gilman to overcome.

“The girls played hard and really did well defensively,” Tammy Weir said. “We were on them when they were out on the 3-point line, but they still shot with us in their face.”

The Pirates got a 19-point, 10-point double-double from Warner, who made seven of 16 total field goal attempts. She was the only Pirate to make a 3-pointer. Grace Grunseth hit six of eight free throws, scored 12 points and pulled down eight rebounds, six of which came on the offensive end. She had a team-high three steals.

Emma Grunseth had five points, eight rebounds and two assists. Tatum Weir scored four points and pulled down seven rebounds and blocked a shot.

Syryczuk had nine rebounds, seven of which were offensive, three assists and a blocked shot.

“We only had four scorers, which hurts also,” Weir said. “But, it wasn’t for a lack of trying. We just weren’t on.”