This year's Storm Lake High girls basketball team finally broke through with a conference win here Tuesday night, handily beating Sheldon, 66-55.
The Tornadoes have been playing better basketball over the past few weeks, and have come close in several Lakes games, including last Friday' night's buzzer-beating loss at the hands of Western Christian.
Tuesday night, freshman guard Slone Masters hit her first two shots - both were three-pointers - and the Tornadoes were on their way.
According to SLHS coach Stacey VanDerSloot, the Tornadoes upped their play both offensively and defensively and played well as a team.
"We are hitting some outside shots and our inside game is looking good," she said. "Our post players have really stepped it up these last couple of weeks, and our guards have been getting them the ball in good position."
The Tornadoes led 17-14 after one quarter and outscored the Orabs 16-10 in the second quarter for a 33-24 at the half.
Storm Lake held a 19-8 edge in the third quarter to all but put the game away.
The Tornadoes were hot from beyond the arc, making eight three-pointers on 18 attempts. Overall, the girls hit 39 percent of their field goal attempts.
Junior Amber Woodford had a big night, scoring a career-high 22 points, including three-three-point shots. She added eight rebounds.
Masters also hit three three-point shots, finishing with 13 points and five rebounds. Post player Amanda Proczak added ten points and six rebounds. Cassie Meylor had big rebounding night with 12 boards.
Senior guard Katie Overturf added nine points, seven assists and five rebounds.
VanDerSloot said her team played outstanding defense in the win.
"We are holding our opponents to under their averages," she said. "We also hit the boards hard."
The Tornadoes held Sheldon to 32 percent shooting and outrebounded them 44-29.
Sioux Central 40
The Alta girls basketball team appears primed for the post-season, though it's still two two-plus weeks away.
The Cyclones picked up this impressive road win Tuesday night in Sioux Rapids, jumping to a 16-5 lead after one quarter and and cruising to the victory.
Alta, 13-6 overall and 8-4 in Northwest Conference action, led 33-17 at the half and 39-38 after three frames.
"We played well on both ends of the court," Alta coach Jeannie Henningsen said. "We shut down their shooters and we worked the ball around on offense for good shots.
"I thought we played a complete game from beginning to end," she added. "We need to continue to work on the little things and play all four quarters."
Three Alta players reached double figures, led by Dee Hinkeldey's 16 points. Senior point guard Jahde Hammer and forward Kelsie Peterson each netted 14.
Hinkeldey was seven of ten from two-point range, while Peterson was four of nine from two-point territory and two of four from beyond arc.
Jessy Bibler led Alta in rebounding with seven, with Hinkeldey adding six and Peterson five.
Brooke Scharn led Sioux Central with 13 points, with senior forward Beth Ehlers adding ten. Briana Ehlers netted seven points while Scharn pulled down a team-high six rebounds.
Southern Calhoun 45
Newell-Fonda improved to 17-1 on its home floor Tuesday night with this non-conference win.
It was a no doubter from the beginning, as the Mustangs allowed just eight SC points in the first half while scoring 40.
"We jumped all over Southern Calhoun in the first half, and I was happy that we held them to just eight points," N-F coach Dick Jungers said.
"Our kids did not come out in the second half with the intensity they needed to put the game away," he said.
Karina Overgaard led the Mustangs with a game-high 12 points while veteran guard Sarah Culp netted 11 and freshman guard Susan Kies nine. Forward Lauren Devereaux nearly hit double figures, scoring eight points.
Heidi Reynolds led Southern Cal with 15 points.
Sac City 50,
The Bulldogs started slow and never got things going in this conference loss to the Indians Tuesday night in Newell.
The Indians jumped to an 11-4 lead and cruised the rest of the way. They led 26-14 at the half and 40-25 after three quarters.
"We didn't play very hard and as a result were never in the game," Bulldog coach Marv Munden said. "Sac City did a good job of making us take tough shots and we didn't shoot the ball very well."
Senior guard Emily Sonksen led Aurelia with 12 points, while senior forward Kristine Munden added nine points and pulled down a team-high nine rebounds. Leah Kai had four rebounds and finished with six assists.
According to Munden, Aurelia was 15 of 37 from two-point range and three of three from the line.
Nicole Gruntorad and Amy Blass led the Indians with 12 points each. Amy Petlon and Tonia McDonough each added ten points and Chloe Huser eight.
St. Mary's 50,
In an up and down performance, the Storm Lake-St. Mary's girls basketball team came on strong late in this Northwest Conference win.
The Panthers led 13-4 after one quarter but were outscored 11-6 in the second and led just 19-15 at the half.
"We lacked focus nearly the entire game," said Panther coach Ryan Berg, who has guided his team to 12 wins in its last 123 games, including nine straight.
St. Mary's led 34-25 after three quarters and outscored the Knights 16-12 in the final frame.
"Pomeroy-Palmer did an excellent job of staying patient, and they shot very well," Berg added. "We were fortunate that we were able to turn it on late in the game."
Senior post player Janie Imming led SM with a double-double, including 14 points and 11 rebounds. Abby Richardson added 13 points and Emily Lenhart pitched in with eight in a balanced attack. Jessica Lussman netted seven points and Emily Lenhart added five rebounds.
The Panthers shot 11 of 23 from two point range for 48 percent and four of six from three-point range for 67 percent.