GMG can’t overcome Cedar Valley Christian

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON • GMG senior McKensie Vaske puts up a shot in the paint while Cedar Valley Christian defenders Candy Mafuta and Maggie Cach attempt to block during the first half of the Wolverines’ loss to the Huskies on Monday.

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON • GMG senior McKensie Vaske puts up a shot in the paint while Cedar Valley Christian defenders Candy Mafuta and Maggie Cach attempt to block during the first half of the Wolverines’ loss to the Huskies on Monday.

GARWIN — Monday was the beginning of a busy week for the GMG girls basketball team, as the Wolverines played the first of three matchups over the next five days before the girls break for winter.

At halftime against Cedar Valley Christian, GMG only trailed 28-22 and were within striking distance, but a big 13-point third quarter for the Huskies and compared to only five points for the Wolverines out of halftime essentially put the game out of reach.

GMG head coach Justin Hornberg said not all of the 56-41 loss for his girls came in the third quarter, but the way his girls came out of halftime didn’t help.

“That’s something one of the girls brought up in our postgame, she didn’t understand why we could play so well for a half but it seems like we go for spurts there and it’s usually in the third quarter where we let teams get away from us,” he said. “I explained it to her that it’s the turnovers, if you commit two or three in a row then take the ball down for the fourth time and you are so amped that you got it across you take the first shot, whether it’s a quality shot or not.”

The Wolverines (2-6) have dropped each of their last five games after a 2-1 start to the season, though the 15-point loss is the second-smallest losing margin of this recent skid.

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON • GMG junior Kelsey Vaverka (34) drives in the paint for a shot while Cedar Valley Christians’ Maggie Cach (24) denies her path during the Wolverines’ loss to the Huskies in Garwin on Monday night.

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON • GMG junior Kelsey Vaverka (34) drives in the paint for a shot while Cedar Valley Christians’ Maggie Cach (24) denies her path during the Wolverines’ loss to the Huskies in Garwin on Monday night.

GMG did frustrate Cedar Valley Christian early on with their zone, but eventually the Huskies found kinks in the armor and were able to exploit them.

“We knew coming in that they had faced a 1-3-1 before and it had bothered them in the first half when they played Midland, but they did exactly to Midland what they did to us,” Hornberg said. “They found the gaps and started getting us to over-pursue the basketball which opened up the weak side and we didn’t our girls to draft like we should, so credit to them.”

The turnovers Hornberg mentioned earlier didn’t help either, as Cedar Valley Christian was able to capitalize many times off of Wolverine mistakes.

Three Huskies reached the double digits on the night, with Molly Hembera leading with way with a game-high 18 points.

He said girls have asked about possibly switching up the defense to give teams a different look, but Hornber said that’s just not possible yet considering the team still doesn’t have the base defense down.

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON

T-R PHOTO BY THORN COMPTON

“Our 1-3-1 has been our base for about four or five years now, and until we can clean that up and get back to where we were the last couple years we can’t change that up and try something new,” he said. “We’ve struggled with our man-to-man defense the whole time, we don’t quite get the concept of playing up in their shirts and being all over them.”

GMG didn’t have a bad individual night scoring, as McKensie Vaske had 14 points to lead the Wolverines, followed by Mable Dieleman with nine and Zoe Duncan with seven, but Hornberg said he wants to see a little more fire in his girls out on the court.

“We played hard, I would just like to see us with a little more life,” he said. “We just seem a little flat right now, almost like it’s the middle of January and we’ve been off for a while. This is our second time with three games in a week and we are just kind of dead right now.”

The Wolverines get a chance to show some more spunk tonight when they travel up to Traer to take on Iowa Star Conference South Division rival North Tama, and Hornberg said though the Redhawks don’t have the best record right now they are better than last year, when GMG swept North Tama.

“Tomorrow night is a quick turnaround going to Traer, obviously you want to get these last two going in to break to have a good feeling about it, but Traer is improving so it will be a tough game,” Hornberg said.

That game between the Wolverines and Redhawks is set for a 6:30 p.m. start tonight in Traer.

Cedar Valley Christian 56, GMG 41

At Garwin

CEDAR VALLEY CHRISTIAN (6-3) — Elizabeth Fields 4 2-4 10, Emma Slagle 2 0-0 6, Abby Scroggs 4 1-3 9, Molly Hembera 8 1-2 18, Abby Pospisil 0 0-0 0, Jannessa Betsworth 0 0-0 0, Maggie Cach 3 6-7 12, Candy Mafuta 0 1-2 1. TOTALS 21 11-18 56.

GMG (2-6) — Madi Krull 1 0-0 3, Mable Dieleman 2 3-4 9, Tory Novotny 1 0-0 2, McKensie Vaske 6 2-3 14, Kelsey Vaverka 3 6-7 12, Zoe Duncan 3 1-2 7, Belle Duncan 0 1-2 1, Emily Vaughn 0 0-0 0, Jordan Yilek 0 0-0 0. TOTALS 13 9-14 41.

CV christian 14 14 13 15 — 56

GMG 9 13 5 14 — 41

3-Point Goals–CVC 3 (Slagle 2, Hembera), GMG 3 (Dieleman 2, Krull). Total Fouls–CVC 11, GMG 14. Fouled Out–none.