Shutout at Holiday Tournament leads to Scouts looking forward to upcoming competition

Senior Jesse Grotelueschen scans the court to find an open pass. Grotelueschen was named to the All-Tournament Team along with senior Dahlia Vodicka.

Becca Meusch

To finalize Christmas festivities, David City High School hosted their annual Holiday Tournament on Dec. 29 and 30 along with teams North Bend, Aquinas, and Elgin Public/Pope John, with both boys and girls placing fourth.

Both Scout basketball teams lost to the Elgin Public/Pope John Wolfpack in the first round of the tournament. The Wolfpack’s strong press made it difficult for the girls to get the ball down the court. A quick offense was also a disadvantage for the girls as they were defeated 58-49. Junior Amber Belt had a clutch layup after a steal from the Wolfpack to finish the game.

“I thought we played outstanding in the first game against Elgin Public/Pope John. They push the basketball up the floor better than any team I have ever coached against,” Girls Head Coach Nathan Wall said. “I know that we lost, but I was so pleased with how we competed and battled back from behind. I was proud of my team after this game.”

Scout boys held Elgin Public/Pope John in their first round game until the fourth quarter. At halftime, the Scouts were trailing 25-22. Junior Ross Kirby started off the third quarter with a basket to tie up the game. Tied at 37 to start the fourth quarter, the Wolfpack took advantage of all scoring opportunities and beat the Scouts 62-50.

Junior Joe Lance and senior Zach Seibert led the team with 12 points, followed by senior Tylar Samek with 10 points, juniors Kirby and Matthew Lewis put up seven points each, and senior Logan Detmer with two points.

“Our first game against Elgin we stuck with them the whole entire time, but towards the end of the game we didn’t make plays to lessen their lead,” Kirby said. “Our strength is that we can really shut down teams from scoring at times.”

The following day, the girls and boys teams played Aquinas. The girls followed close behind the Monarchs, 12-7, at the end of the first quarter. Aquinas’ accurate shots and aggressive play posed a challenge for the Scouts to put up baskets. Aquinas conquered the Scouts with the final score at 44-26.

“Our kids also have a lot of fight as we have been down big this year on several occasions and have been able to stay competitive until the final buzzer,” Wall said. “Our effort and intentions were good, but we just didn’t have anything left in the tank against Aquinas after our first game.”

In the second round of the tournament, the boys team faced the Monarchs as well, ending the first quarter ahead 11-10. As the Scout boys headed into halftime, the score was tied at 21. Aquinas advanced in the second half of play due to a more assertive defense. Struggling to make shots, the Scouts were down in the fourth quarter and came up short 56-31.

Scoring for the Aquinas game was led by Samek with 13 points, followed by Lewis with six, Kirby and Seibert both with five, and Lance with two. Lance and Samek were named to the All-Tournament Team along with seniors Jesse Grotelueschen and Dahlia Vodicka for the girls.

“We played Aquinas really tough for the first half, and we played Elgin really tough for two quarters, but we need to put together an entire game. I still have a tremendous amount of respect for the way our players keep coming to practice every day working hard and trying to improve, despite our record not being great,” Boys Head Coach Ben Knobbe said. “I think we still aren’t even close to our potential, and I look forward to seeing what we can do in the second semester.”