By Bob Simmons
The Elsberry Lady Indians fell short Monday in the opening round of the Bank of Old Monroe basketball tournament in Winfield with a 40-39 loss to Fort Zumwalt East.
Leading scorer was Tess Weakly with 18 pts, leading rebounder was Megan Hagemeier with six, five of those being offensive. The leading assist players were Tess Weakly and Megan Hagemeier with three each.
“After the game starting out very slow for us, we made a few adjustments at half time and came out with more energy which allowed us to pick it up on the defensive end which led to offense,” said Coach Kari Koch-Dowell. “In the fourth quarter, the game went back and forth being within one to two points the whole time. We got some big stops at the end of the game but just couldn’t keep the ball on our side as we would give it right back to them. Turnovers hurt us at the end of the game. I have been pretty impressed with my bench play so far. They have given us a lot coming off the bench. Tess Weakly and Megan Hagemeier I think are starting to figure it out consistently. We still need to improve on our half court defense and offense since we have changed it up some.”
In another opening round game, the host Lady Warriors lost 58-16. Bree Burkemper led Winfield with four points followed by Chloe Kaimann and Tatum Bradshaw with three points each.
Elsberry got their season rolling with a 54-23 win at Wright City. Leading scorer was Hagemeier with 13 pts also adding 12 rebounds and eight of those offensively. Caylee Martin had 12 and Tess Weakly had 11 pts and 10 steals.
“The team showed great effort the entire game,” said Koch-Dowell. “The first half was a struggle offensively, called first game jitters but in the second half we started to click on both ends. Having two girls with double doubles in the first game of the year is a great way to start off the season. This was an all around team effort with balanced scoring. Everyone that played had a positive impact on the game and was in the scorebook.”