Rivals split hoops grudge matches

Ozaukee girls win road thriller under new coach over Cedar Grove-Belgium
Ozaukee Press staff

A tumultuous start to the week for the Ozaukee High School girls’ basketball team soon faded as one Warrior reached a rare milestone and a new head coach led the team to two victories, including an overtime win at Cedar Grove-Belgium last Friday in front of loud crowds rooting for both teams.

Sophomore Natalie Miller led five Warriors in double digits with 16 points, including two clutch free throws with 2 minutes, 26 seconds left in overtime to give Ozaukee the lead for good, 73-72.

After the teams exchanged possessions on missed shots — the Rockets rimmed out a three-pointer, the Warriors missed three times in a row on one possession, and the Rockets shot an errant layup — Ozaukee went into a slowdown mode to burn the clock.

Several seconds into the possession, Madison Karmasin found a wide open Nicole Liermann cutting to the basket for a layup. That made it 75-72 with 53 seconds left.

Rocket Alexis Bahr, who led all scorers with 20 points, missed inside and Ozaukee’s Gabby Klas hit one of two free throws with 10.3 seconds left to seal a 76-72 win.

“It was very fun, especially to pull out an overtime win. It was good to celebrate with my teammates in the locker room,” Miller said.

“I think we really brought some more energy in the second half and played more as a team.”

The Warriors took a 23-16 lead early, but the Rockets answered with a 16-2 run to take a 32-15 lead and were up, 32-29, at halftime.

Newly promoted Ozaukee coach Linda Weyker said it wasn’t the offense that brought her team back.

“They just kept the pressure on and they played good defense, and that’s what won it for us, the defense,” she said.

The game was knotted at 67 before a five-minute overtime period.

In the second half, neither team’s lead reached beyond four points, meaning every bucket, steal, assist and rebound meant more than it would in a blowout.

Warrior senior star Gabby Klas broke a 63-63 tie with a three-pointer with 1:51 left. Bahr hit a shot inside to cut the lead to one.

With 57.6 seconds left, Liermann made one of two free throws to push the lead back to two.

The Rockets answered when freshman Olivia Bahr found fellow freshman Sophie Beightol cutting to the basket from the top of the key for an open layup to tie the game with 38 seconds left.

On the ensuing possession, Alexis Bahr stole a deep pass under the basket, and the Rockets called a timeout with 29.5 seconds left.

They worked to get a shot, and Beightol took a deep three-pointer a few feet behind the top of the key that only caught air.

The Warriors called a timeout and got the ball to senior Sophie Uhlenberg on the right side but she was smothered by Rockets as she tried to get a shot off before the buzzer.

Cedar Grove-Belgium coach Mike Bikman, known as Bik, said Beightol was upset about her late airball.

“I said it was a good shot,” he said. “There was a lot of learning stuff today.”

Bik pointed to some positives that came out of the game.

“Olivia had great defense. Aubrey (Marti) is just a great ball hander for us,” he said. “I’m happy with this. We lost, yes, it’s sad. But they played their hearts out. The atmosphere was awesome.”

Miller added eight rebounds and four assists from her point guard spot.

Klas had 15 points and three assists, Uhlenberg had 14 and seven rebounds. Caitlyn Weyker had 12 points, six rebounds and three assists, and Lierman had 10 points. Evie Geis had four points and seven rebounds, and Mary Shininger had three points and six rebounds.

For the Rockets, Alexis Bahr had eight rebounds with her 20 points. Beightol had 18 points and went 8-for-10 on free throws. Tara Schmitz had 13 points and 14 rebounds. Olivia Bahr had 11 points, nine rebounds and five assists. Marti had four assists.
“We couldn’t finish at the very end,” Alexis Bahr said. “We did good the entire time until the very end. They got a basket wide open and that was the deal breaker.”

Klas said finishing was the focus.

“I think in the beginning we came out a little flustered and toward the end we all just pulled together because we had that finish mentality. That’s what our coaches have been telling us lately is finish, finish, finish,” she said.

Neither team excelled on free throws. The Warriors went 18-for-34 and the Rockets were 22-for-39.

For Linda Weyker, it was her second win in four days since taking over the team.

The Northern Ozaukee School District parted ways with second-year head coach Jason Pollard early in the week and had Weyker, the junior varsity coach, take over the varsity team.

Athletic Director Andy McKee issued this statement:

“We would like to thank Jason Pollard for his service to our girls’ basketball program.  We are confident that Linda Weyker, with the help of a number of individuals at practice and on the bench, will be able to see us through to the end of the season. It was a great first week under Coach Weyker’s leadership.”

Weyker said her team worked hard through what she called a “whirlwind” week.

“As you can see, they put the results on the floor tonight,” she said.

“Credit to Cedar Grove. They worked really hard on the court. They have some great players out there. Our girls just pushed through and never gave up.”

Weyker, a special education teacher at Random Lake High School, has been coaching about 15 years, first for youth teams and the last seven as head of Ozaukee’s junior varsity. She said she is focused on leading the Warriors for the rest of the season.

“What happens after that is all up to how Ozaukee moves forward.”

Klas hits four digits

In a 64-54 win over Kohler Dec. 14, Klas eclipsed 1,000 career points with a three-pointer at the end of the first half.

She said she didn’t know that was the shot that did it.

“I honestly had no idea. I was just out there playing, and that’s the way that it ended up being,” she said. “I looked over at my bench and I had my whole team there. I couldn’t ask for a better team.”

“We were pretty happy and pretty proud of her. That was a changing game for us,” Weyker said.

Klas had 16 points and Uhlenberg had 12 with nine rebounds. Lierman had 10 points and Shininger had eight with nine rebounds.

Ozaukee, 3-2 in the Big East Conference and 4-6 overall, was to play at Random Lake (5-3) on Tuesday and host Sheboygan Christian (0-7) on Tuesday, Jan. 4.

Rockets fall to Manitowoc Lutheran

The Rockets fell behind, 28-13, at halftime and lost, 43-30, on Dec. 14 to Manitowoc Lutheran.

Schmitz and Katelyn Morris each had seven points.

The Rockets, 1-3 in the Big East and 3-5 overall, were to play at Sheboygan Lutheran (8-1) on Tuesday and at Kohler (2-6) on Tuesday, Jan. 4.



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Ozaukee Press

Wisconsin’s largest paid circulation community weekly newspaper. Serving Port Washington, Saukville, Grafton, Fredonia, Belgium, as well as Ozaukee County government. Locally owned and printed in Port Washington, Wisconsin.

125 E. Main St.
Port Washington, WI 53074
(262) 284-3494


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