Bruning-Davenport/Shickley took on the Mullen Broncos in the first round of the 2019 NSAA Class D-2 Girls State Tournament at Lincoln North Star High School. The 21-3 Broncos proved to be a tough competitor for the 21-4 Eagles.
Both teams traded baskets in the opening quarter; with under 30 seconds left to play, Eagle sophomore Bryn Kadel dropped in a three to give BDS a 7-6 lead after the first quarter. The Eagles were plagued by foul trouble in the second quarter but got a spark from their bench.
The Eagles went on a 7-3 run with junior Kaylee Noel completing an old fashioned three-point play. Despite the run, the Eagles trailed the Broncos 17-15 at half time. The Broncos extended their lead to 10 points early in the third quarter. The Eagles were able to cut the lead to six with one quarter left to play.
BDS senior guard Jadyn Kleinschmidt knocked down a 3-pointer in the early seconds of the fourth quarter to narrow the gap 30-27. The Eagles kept chipping away and took the lead with 3:59 remaining in the contest. The third-seeded Eagles held the Broncos scoreless in the final six minutes of the game and took a 36-34 victory advancing to the semi-final game against the Wynot Blue Devils.
“Getting past Mullen in the first game was a challenge in itself but even when the girls were down by 10 points in the third quarter they never gave up,” BDS head coach Shana Gerberding commented.
Regan Alfs and Macy Kamler would pace BDS in scoring with 10 each. Kleinschmidt had eight points. The Eagles were 12-for-22 from the charity stripe.
In the semi-final match up on Saturday night, the Eagles took on a tough Wynot Blue Devil (the eventual D-2 State Champions) squad at The Bob Devaney Sports Center. Neither team led by more than eight points until the final quarter of the game. The Blue Devils would go on an 18-2 run in the fourth quarter to put the Eagles away.
Despite having 10 turnovers in the first quarter, the Eagles led 11-7 after one period of play. The Blue Devils would take their first lead of the game with just over six minutes to play in the second quarter. The Eagles would fight back taking a 21-18 lead but the Blue Devils would score the final four points of the quarter, to lead by one point heading into half time.
Both teams traded baskets in the early going of the third quarter. The Eagles would go on a 13-4 run taking a 38-33 lead with just seconds remaining in the third quarter. The Blue Devils would hit a shot at the buzzer at end of the third period cutting the Eagles lead to just three points going into the fourth quarter. The Blue Devils pushed the tempo in the fourth quarter to outscore the Eagles 18-2 in the fourth stanza to win 53-40.
“The girls were amped up and ready to play Wynot in the semi-final game,” Gerbering said. “The game could’ve gone either way but Wynot capitalized on our mistakes in the fourth quarter and hit some shots. Despite the tradition of Wynot’s basketball program, the girls believed they belonged on the same court.”
Alfs led all scorers in the contest with 20 points. Kamler added nine. The Eagles were just 4-for-12 from the free-throw line.
The Eagles faced the Sterling Lady Jets in the Consolation game at Lincoln Southeast. The Eagles and Jets faced off in the MUDECAS Tournament in January where the Jets won 44-37. The Eagles jumped out to a 6-0 to start the game before the Jets battled back and tied the game. Both teams would trade baskets before the Jets would knock down a three with under a minute remaining in the opening quarter to take 11-10 lead after one quarter.
The Jets extended their lead in the opening minutes of the second quarter. Alfs scored on three consecutive possessions, but the Eagles still trailed the Jets 20-16 as the buzzer sounded to end the first half. Kleinschmidt started the third quarter connecting on a 3-point shot for the Eagles narrowing the lead to one point. Noel ended the quarter for the Eagles nailing a trey at the buzzer to tie the score at 27 a piece with eight minutes left to play.
The Jets began the final quarter on a 6-1 run. Kamler scored three points late in the fourth quarter giving the Eagles a 34-33 lead. The Jets evened out the score on a free throw with just under one minute left to play in the game. The Eagles forced a turnover with 5.8 seconds left to play. BDS would then go the length of the floor with Kleinschmidt finding Kadel who scored a lay-up as the buzzer sounded. The Eagles won 36-34 finishing in third place in the 2019 State Tournament and improved their record to 23-5. BDS was State Runner-up in Class D-1 last season.
“Playing in the consolation game is all about guts,” Gerbering said. “Both teams are mentally and physically exhausted, bummed about not playing for a State Championship. We found ourselves down in the fourth quarter but they never folded and kept working on each end of the floor. With the game tied at 34, the girls executed the play to go the length of the court with 5.8 seconds to play to score a lay-up as time expired is a memory the girls won’t forget. This year’s team had the determination and never say die attitude that won several games for us. They were never down and out of a game. This is what I will remember most about this team.”
Alfs scored 11 points in the consolation final and Kamler added eight. Kleinschmidt sank two 3-pointers for six points and Taylor Sliva had five points. Noel scored three points and Kadel had the game-winner. Raegan Fiala capped the BDS scoring with a free throw. The Eagles sank four 3-pointers and went 4-for-12 from the charity stripe.
“I would like to thank the seniors, Jadyn Kleinschmidt and TaraLee Hudson, for their commitment to the BDS girls basketball program,” Gerberding commented. In their four years, Kleinschmidt and Hudson were a part of an 84-22 record, three Conference Tournament Championships, one Conference Tournament Runner-up, three Conference Regular Season Champions, one Conference Regular Season Runner-up, two District Championships, qualified for the State Tournament three times, State Tournament Runner-up, and most recently third place at the State Tournament.”
“A special thank you to all BDS team members on all your hard work, determination, dedication during the season,” Gerberding added. We are ‘All for One and One for All.’ Also, thank you to all the parents, families, friends, Bruning-Davenport and Shickley pep bands and student body for all the support throughout the season and at the State Tournament.”