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RHS: Girls Basketball
Girls' Basketball Falls to Eagles
By Student Writer - Connor Kuczmarski | Published: 02/16/2013

     The Rhinelander High School girls' basketball team played extremely tough on Friday night, before ultimately falling to the Great Northern Conference leading Northland Pines Eagles by a score of 45-35. Just as quickly as the Lady Hodags' winning streak started it came to an end, but improvement is consistently evident spanning their last several outings.

"We did improve (tonight)," RHS girls' basketball coach Mark Jacobson said. "We committed a few untimely turnovers and reverted back to a few things we have been working on, but Pines is a very good team. We did well."

The Eagles (19-1, 10-1 GNC) sit atop the conference standings for a reason. Known for their high powered offense (50.2 ppg) as well as their smothering pressure defense (36.4 ppg), Northland Pines is comfortable with getting an early lead and maintaining it throughout for the duration of the contest.

Unfortunately for Rhinelander that is exactly what the Eagles did, but the Lady Hodags did not make it an easy night for their opponents. Riding the momentum of a two game winning streak, the Hodags came out and consistently stopped the Eagles leading scorer Holly Darton (11.0 ppg) holding her to only four first half points.

Kylie Hunter and Sydnei Smith sparked a slow starting Hodag offense, scoring seven and four points respectively in the opening two quarters.The Hodags entered the halfway break trailing the Eagles 18-14.

     "We came out and dug ourselves into a hole in the beginning," Jacobson explained. "Luckily we managed to dig ourselves out. We were only down four points at the half and it was still very much anyone's game. Unfortunately Pines came out and made a run and we never really answered."

Northland Pines came out of the locker room with intensified energy, outscoring the Hodags 16-6 in a pivotal third quarter. Ellie Zyhowski had eight points for the Eagles in the frame, and effectively forced the Hodags to play catch-up for the remainder of the contest.

The Hodags fought valiantly until the bitter end, scoring a game high 12 points in the fourth quarter to the Eagles 11. The Hodags were able to pull within 7 with one minute and 30 seconds on the clock, but the Eagles ability to sink timely free throws ended the comeback big for the Hodags.

Jacobson attributed Northland Pines stifling defense as a primary obstacle following the contest.

"They do a very good job pressuring the ball," Jacobson said. "They are right there with you. It is tough to overcome."

Regarding a particular impressive athlete, Jacobson spoke highly of Hunter, a previously injured starter who is now contributing significantly off the bench.

"I thought Kylie Hunter came off the bench for us tonight and provided us with a spark," Jacobson said. "She helped us climb out of the hole we dug early in the game by grabbing a few key rebounds."

Hunter and Brianna Gilbert led the Hodags in scoring with eight points apiece. Zyhowski was the highest scorer on the night, pacing the Eagles with 12 points throughout the contest.

The Hodags are now 3-16 and 3-9 in the GNC, and look forward to taking on a tough Oconto Falls team Feb. 18. The last time the Panthers met a Great Northern Conference squad they emerged victorious over Antigo by a score of 43-33.

"We are coming up against a very good Oconto Falls team," Jacobson stated. "We are going to have to ratchet things back up and get to work."

Box Score:
Rhinelander vs. Northland Pines
Friday Feb. 15

Northland Pines 12 6 16 11-45
Rhinelander 9 5 6 12-35

Pines (45): Darton 5, Bohnen 8, Zyhowski 12, Alft 7, Mai 4, Ridderbusch 9
Rhinelander (35): Willging 3, Smith 6, Gilbert 8, Hunter 8, Fortier 4, Meyer 3, Aschenbrenner 3

Three Pointers: Rhinelander 2 (Meyer 1, Hunter 1), Northland Pines 1 (Mai 1)We are coming up against a very good Oconto Falls team,

Hodag Sports Library
12/06/2014 Lady Hodags Dominate at home
11/29/2014 Hodags Excel at Wausau East/West Tournament
11/23/2014 Lady Hodags Suffer 2nd non-conference Loss
11/21/2014 Rough Start for Lady Hodags
11/13/2014 Girl's Basketball: Looking ahead
03/18/2014 Girls' Basketball Banquet: Reflection on a year of change
03/13/2014 Girls’ Basketball Review: A year of transformation and growth
03/07/2014 Mosinee Ends Lady Hodags' Playoff Run
03/04/2014 Hodag Girls Defeat Wausau East to Advance in Regionals
02/27/2014 Lady Hodags, Seniors Step Up and Shut Down the Raiders 56-26

Lady Hodags drop to Thunderbirds 54-37 01/10/2015 The Lady Hodags made the journey north to Lakeland Union High School Friday night to face the Thunderbirds in part one of a Hodag - Thunderbird basketball doubleheader. The girls had front stage first
Lady Hodags face tough challenge in Chargers 12/30/2014 With only one day left for 2014, the Rhinelander High School girls basketball team faced a tough challenge at the Jim Miagza Community gymnasium Tuesday night when they faced the Wittenberg-Birnamwood
Lady Hodags fall to Antigo 12/20/2014 December 19 was a meeting between 2 schools, Antigo High School and Rhinelander High School. These two schools have a storied rivalry, dating back to the 1930’s. With the boys playing later, Rhineland

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