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Pirates break loose midway through first half, sail to win

Pirates break loose midway through first half, sail to win Pirates break loose midway through first half, sail to win


A sluggish start by Gilman gave the Rib Lake girls basketball team hope of hanging around Monday night. But once the Pirates got some steals and their transition game going, the Redmen were left behind in their 63-22 cross-county non-conference matchup.

Gilman senior Grace Grunseth did most of the damage, piling up 30 points while making 10 of 12 shots from the field. She had 17 points in the first half alone to get the Pirates out of their early doldrums and spark a 17-1 run that broke it open.

“We got off to a slow start,” Gilman head coach Tammy Weir said. “But, we were able to pick it up and finish strong with a nice win.”

Rib Lake head coach Mike Wudi was happy to see his team break Gilman’s full-court pressure with relative ease in the early going, which was key to the Lady Redmen sticking close in the first nine to 10 minutes.

“We got a team out of the press,” he said. “We had some silly turnovers, but we settled down and we actually handled their press. I figured that was going to be there all night long. That was one of the positives.”

Gilman scored the game’s first seven points, but a Reagan Reinhardt short shot and free throws by Savana Radtke made it 7-4. Grunseth answered with a pretty shot fake and drive and Emma Warner added a free throw for a 10-4 Gilman lead. Radtke countered with two free throws. Grunseth’s post feed gave Tatum Weir a bucket and then she used a wicked spin move to get by Rib Lake defender Rebekah Strobach for a bucket.

Strobach answered with a 3-pointer near the top of the key, making it 14-9 and giving Rib Lake’s home crowd something to cheer about.

But that’s when Gilman’s 2-3 zone started to take its toll.

A Warner steal led to an Aubrey Syryczuk breakaway and an 18-9 lead. A Madisyn James steal led to a three-point play off a Grunseth assist. James got another steal and her outlet pass gave Syryczuk another basket and a 23-9 lead for the Pirates.

Weir scored inside and, after a series of free throws, Grunseth turned a steal into a 31-10 lead to cap the game-turning run. Grunseth got a three-point play off another steal with 23.1 seconds left to make it 36-12 before Reinhardt sank a last-second 3-pointer for a 36-15 halftime score.

“The girls were very aggressive and anticipated Rib Lake’s passes very well,” Tammy Weir said. “We were able to finish with 18 steals and 12 assists as a team.”

Syryczuk and Grunseth scored buckets off steals as Gilman scored the first eight points of the second half to go up 4415 and assure it was going to earn its 11th win of the season.

Rib Lake’s early offensive momentum dwindled as the Redmen only scored seven points in the second half on buckets by Radtke and Nellie Hopkins and a 3-pointer for Reinhardt, who finished with a season-high 10 points.

“That’s a good night for her,” Wudi said. “She certainly shot the ball better.”

Radtke scored seven points for the Redmen (2-15), Strobach finished with three and Hopkins two.

Grunseth added eight rebounds, five steals, three assists and a blocked shot to her game totals for the Pirates. Syryczuk had 10 points and three steals. Warner was held to five points but made an impact with five rebounds and four steals. Likewise, Emma Grunseth was quiet from a scoring perspective with four points, but the sophomore post had eight rebounds, two assists and a steals. Weir had an impact as well inside with six points, two rebounds, two blocked shots and a steal.

James had two points and three steals. Mikayla Waichulis had an early bucket, two rebounds and two assists. Katelynn Schmitt hit a 15-foot jumper in the second half and Hannah Vick sank two secondhalf free throws and grabbed two boards.

Gilman had a 29-17 rebounding advantage and made 12 of 15 free throws, compared to Rib Lake’s seven of 14. The Redmen were three of seven from 3-point range, but just three of 29 on two-point shots, while Gilman was 24 of 42 on twos but just one of 11 on 3s.

Rib Lake is at Marawood South leader Newman Catholic on Friday, while Gilman beat Granton Tuesday to improve to 12-5 and hosts Columbus Catholic tonight, Thursday.