Moose Lake Star Gazette - Serving Carlton and Pine Counties Since 1895

By Peggy Granquist
Moose Lake Star-Gazette 

Lady Rebels win one, lose one


January 23, 2020

The MLWR Lady Rebels played two games this past week and went 1 for 2. The Rebels played the Duluth Marshall Hilltoppers in Duluth and Floodwood at home.

The Lady Rebels started out well against the Hilltoppers. At one point, the score was 13-10, Duluth Marshall. It appeared the momentum was with the Rebels early on, however the game was temporarily stopped due to an unruly crowd. When the game resumed, Maci Kukuk made the technical free throws but the Rebels were never able to get back into the game mentally. MLWR attempted to keep pace with the Hilltoppers, but Duluth Marshall slowly pulled away. The score at the end of the first half was 41-21, Hilltoppers.

The second half proved to be more difficult for the Lady Rebels as they could only muster up 16 points as the Hilltoppers piled on 47. Rebels lost 88-37.

Maci Kukuk led the Rebels in scoring with 8, Alivia Mallory 6, Ella Rhoades 6, Carmen Hoffman 4, Emily Bohnsack 2, Natalie Mikrot 3, Skyla Thompson 3, Monica Mikrot 2, and Grace Stephenson 2.

“Duluth Marshall did a nice job defensively against us,” said Coach Judd. “They made things difficult for us and we struggled to get into our offense. I thought we did a nice job in our half court defense, but unfortunately we did not do well in transition. Lack of communication and getting back on defense really cost us at the end of the first half and the second half. Hopefully we learn from this and bounce back the next game.”

On Thursday, January 16, the Rebels took on the Floodwood Polar Bears. MLWR started off the scoring with a nice feed from Maci Kukuk to Ella Rhoades for an easy bank shot. Floodwood scored a quick 4 points before Alivia Mallory was able to drive in for a layup. The Polar Bears were able to take a 3-point lead until Emily Bohnsack hit 2 free throws to pull the Rebels within 1 point. Monica and Natalie Mikrot each hit a 3-pointer to put the Rebels up 15-10. MLWR was up by 8 with 5 minutes left in the half but Floodwood was able to claw their way back into the game. The Rebels led at the 2-minute mark, but a 3-pointer by Floodwood put the half time score at 24-23, Polar Bears.

Floodwood scored the first 5 points of the second half before the Rebels broke their shooting funk with a Maci Kukuk steal for the layup and Alivia Mallory’s easy 2-pointer and a 3-point bank shot. MLWR was still down 35-30. Natalie Mikrot drove in for a layup and drew a foul and hit her two free throws but Floodwood continued to hold the lead at 37-32.

Both teams mishandled their next possessions, but the Rebels got the ball back. Tough Rebels defense and rebounds on both the offensive and defensive side of the ball translated into points for MLWR. The Rebels quickly built their lead 52-42 with about 3 minutes left in the game but let it evaporate by costly turnovers and miscues at the free throw line. Floodwood came back within 3 and had a chance to tie but missed the 3-pointer. Maci Kukuk got the rebound and outlet to Natalie Mikrot who was able to draw the Polar Bear foul with 13 seconds left in the game. Mikrot hit both ends of her one and one which all but sealed the victory for the Rebels. Floodwood hit a last second 3-pointer but it was not enough. Rebels won 55-53.

Natalie Mikrot was the leading scorer for the Lady Rebels with 16, Maci Kukuk 10, Alivia Mallory 9, Emily Bohnsack 8, Monica Mikrot 6, Ella Rhoades 4, and Kelli Granquist 2.

“The girls played with a lot of heart, especially in the second half,” said Coach Judd. “We had a nice lead in the first half but Floodwood was able to patiently climb back into the game and pushed the lead out to 7 points in the second half. Credit to our girls on being active and making them feel uncomfortable. Hopefully we can get on a roll here in the upcoming weeks and build some momentum going into February.”


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