No. 1 Cubs maul Mustangs

Story and photos by Joe Randleman
No. 1 Cubs maul Mustangs

NEVADA — A long break did nothing to slow down the No. 1 Nevada girls’ basketball team.

The Cubs returned from Christmas break looking as dominant as ever in a 57-17 victory over Prairie City-Monroe Tuesday at the Nevada High School Field House.

Defense was again the strong point for Nevada. The Cubs held PCM without a point for the first 12 minutes on their way to taking a 31-3 lead at the half.

“Defense is definitely something we take pride in and something we want to be known for,” Nevada forward Kati Cassabaum said. “We always try to do our best in man because that works the best for us.”

In addition to anchoring the stifling Cub defensive performance with five steals and one block, Cassabaum also scored 15 points and dished out five assists. She made 6 of 9 field goals, constantly beating PCM down the floor for easy baskets.

“Our team is just full of athletes,” Cassabaum said. “I think playing a lot of different sports helps (you) outrun or outmaneuver the other teams athletic-wise.”

As a team, Nevada shot 45 percent from the field and made 5 of 16 3-pointers and 8 of 12 free throws. The Cubs had 18 assists on 22 field goals and they totaled 18 steals and four blocks on defense.

“We had a couple scrimmages over break — Ankeny Centennial came up — so I think that just helped us be a little bit sharper, both offensively and defensively,” Nevada head coach Kristin Meyer said. “We came out tonight, especially that first half, and just played really well together. We were in the right spots defensively; offensively we had good ball movement, had a lot of fastbreak baskets and did a nice job all around.”

Nevada displayed great balance against the Mustangs.

Lexy Koudelka and Abby Stephenson also scored in double figures and Alli Fey just missed the double-digit mark for Nevada. Koudelka put up 12 points, seven rebounds, four steals and two blocks; Stephenson had 10 points, five steals and four assists and Fey finished with eight points and one block.

Hattie Rhodes chipped in four points and three rebounds off the bench for Nevada. Claire Ausman had three points, two assists and two steals,;Holly Coogler tallied three points and one assist and Amaris Hornbuckle chipped in two points and three assists.

The victory put Nevada at 8-1 overall and 7-0 in the Heart of Iowa Conference.

Nevada 57, PCM 17

PCM 0 3 9 5 - 17

N 14 17 13 13 - 57

Nevada (57) - Claire Ausman 1-6 0-0 3, Abby Stephenson 4-10 1-2 10, Holly Coogler 1-1 0-0 3, Madison Abraham 0-1 0-0 0, Amanda Fortmann 0-0 0-0 0, Lexy Koudelka 5-11 2-2 12, Alli Fey 3-8 0-0 8, Izzy Kapustka 0-0 0-0 0, Elizabeth Wessels 0-0 0-0 0, Kati Cassabaum 6-9 3-6 15, Amaris Hornbuckle 0-0 2-2 2, Hattie Rhodes 2-3 0-0 4, Grace Francis 0-0 0-0 0. totals: 22-49 8-12 57. 3-point field goals (5): Fey 2, Ausman, Stephenson, Coogler. Rebounds (24): Koudelka 7. Assists (18): Cassabaum 5. Steals (18): Cassabaum 5. Blocks (4): Koudelka 2.