PENDER — West Point Guardian Angels Central Catholic held off Ponca in the C2-4 subdistrict finals here Thursday night with a 47-33 win.
The Bluejays led from wire-to-wire, but the Indians made a run midway through the second quarter that brought them to within four after trailing by 11 earlier in the game.
After falling behind 17-6 at the end of the first eight minutes, the Indians opened the second with a free throw from Maggie McGill and then added a Kaci Day putback from her own offensive rebound to make it 17-9 with 6 minutes, 42 seconds left in the quarter.
“We started to put some things together after they had really shut us down early in the game,” said Ponca coach Bob Hayes. “We did a good job coming back, but they kept coming.”
Indian freshman Samantha Ehlers got a steal and went coast-to-coast for a layup to make it 17-11 before Day hit a long two-pointer to make it 17-13, causing Guardian Angels coach Jerry Stracke to call a timeout with 4:55 left in the half.
“We played pretty good defense the entire game,” Stracke said. “They’re a good team so they are going to get their points. We just had to settle in and be patient and look for our opportunities.”
Marissa Hunke hit a little runner inside to put the Bluejays back up by six coming out of the timeout, but Ehlers hit from inside to make it a four-point game again.
Sophia Hass found Brandi Doernemann inside with 2:30 left in the second to put GACC back up by six.
Another Ehlers basket inside made it four again 28 seconds later.
Hanna Knobbe hit Hass inside to make it six again before Day answered for Ponca inside.
Brenna Rief scored off the dribble to make it 25-19.
Ponca scored again before the half, but Hass hit Doernemann again at the end of the half to keep it at a six-point game heading into the intermission.
The lead grew to nine by the end of the third as Doernemann hit another basket with nine seconds remaining on an offensive rebound to end the quarter.
“Our bench really held their own here tonight. That helped keep us a little fresher in the second half,” Stracke said. “We just needed to slow down, keep our composure and wait for the offense to work.”
The Bluejays opened it up in the fourth, beginning with a Hass bucket to open the period with a dribble drive down the left side of the lane.
After a Ponca basket, Hass scored again on a layup after GACC broke the Ponca press.
With 1:42 to go in the game, Rief, who finished with a game-high 15 points, canned 1 of 2 free throws to make it 45-33.
“This was crazy fun,” Rief said. “It was fun when we got things going. We need to keep working and move on from here.”
Depending on other subdistrict results, it appears both team should move on to the district round with Indians grabbing a wild-card spot.
“We’re in a good position,” Stracke said. “We’re where we intended to be; now we just need to keep working to get where we want to go.”
GACC 17 10 7 13 — 47
Ponca 6 15 4 8 — 33
WEST POINT GUARDIAN ANGELS CENTRAL CATHOLIC (22-3): Sophia Hass 5 0-2 10; Marissa Hunke 3 2-2 8; Kate Gnad 2 0-0 4; Brenna Rief 5 3-4 15; Brandi Doernemann 5 0-0 10.
PONCA (20-4): Alyssa Crosgrove 3 0-0 7; Maggie McGill 0 3-4 3; Kaci Day 5 1-2 11; Samantha Ehlers 6 0-1 12.