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Bearcats girls open the basketball season with a win against WEM

By Mark Johnson, coach
KCC 87 – WEM 55
The KCC Bearcats girls basketball team hit the road for their opening game of the season. They made the trek down Highway 59 to Erskine to take on the Win-E-Mac Patriots.
Minnesota High School Basketball has a new element to the game this season. The MSHSL has approved and implemented the 35-second shot clock for both boys’ and girls’ basketball across all four classes of competition. It may take a bit for players, officials and clock operators to get used to the new rule, but it will be a new element to the game for all involved.
The Bearcats started out slowly on the offensive side of the ball. KCC struggled to get shots to fall in the opening minutes and turned the ball over on several occasions. As the game progressed the Bearcats’ defensive pressure started to take its toll on the Patriots and KCC turned their opponents’ turnovers into points and steadily built a first-half lead. The Bearcats were very active on the offensive glass and capitalized on second-chance points opportunities. KCC took a 46-26 lead at the end of the first half.
The second half got mired down with slow play and a ton of free throws due to excessive fouling. The Bearcats’ aggressive and sometimes reckless play on defense led to the Patriots going to the free throw line for 34 attempts in the second half of the game alone.
KCC continued to pour in baskets on the offensive end to build their lead, but the flow of the game disappeared and hindered KCC’s pace of play. The Bearcats bettered their opponent 41-29 in the second half to cruise to the 87-55 win and get their first game of the year in the books.
The girls were excited to get their first game action of the season. They got after it on both ends of the floor and did a nice job of dictating the style of play. We obviously committed too many fouls in the contest, but on the positive side were aggressive in all facets of the game and had a balanced attack from the entire team.
Scoring leaders: Morgan Turn 17, Greta Kunia 16, Kaydence White 15, McKinley Folland 12, Berlyn Strege 6, Hanna Warnke 5, Aliyah Vig 4, Lily Peterson 4, Afton Lindgren 4, Ellen Hilman 2, Kasey Waling 2
Assist leaders: Berlyn Strege 4, Hanna Warnke 3, Lily Peterson 3, Morgan Turn 3
Rebound leaders: Kaydence White 10, Afton Lindgren 8, McKinley Folland 7, Greta Kuznia 7


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