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By Jake Hull
Whitman County Gazette 

Vikings girls basketball on track for strong season

Won two-of-three games in Colton tournament

 

January 4, 2024

Jake Hull | The Gazette

Elena Flansburg takes a shot for the Garfield-Palouse Vikings in their match against the Potlatch Loggers. Bottom

PALOUSE - The Garfield-Palouse girls basketball team improved their overall record to 5-4 on the season after winning two games in a Christmas tournament.

They played three games between Wednesday, Dec. 27, Thursday, Dec. 28, and Friday, Dec. 29, with all games in Colton.

The first game in the tournament for the Viking girls was played against Potlatch. The Vikings stood tall, earning the 43-35 victory.

The Vikings would lead 10-2 early on in the first quarter before Potlatch called a timeout. The Vikings had stellar defensive action and pressing early in the game, as they have done all season, which helped for the early lead. The first would end with the Vikings ahead 16-10. Elena Flansburg would score eight points in the first quarter, and Morgan Lentz added five of her own.

The Vikings went on an 8-5 run early in the second quarter, and sustained a 10-point lead heading into the second half.

Potlatch cut the lead from 10 to five in the third quarter due to turnovers and careless mistakes from the Vikings on offense. Garfield-Palouse would finish the quarter strong, leading 34-24 heading into the fourth.

In the fourth quarter, Potlatch again would cut the lead to five with four minutes left in the game. Garfield-Palouse would call a time out leading by four with two minutes to play.

After the time out, the defense from the Vikings dominated, leading to the eight-point victory.

Flansburg would finish with 20 points in the game and was elite on the defensive end, creating steals and turnovers that led to extra possessions for the Vikings.

Kyra Brantner would finish with eight points, and Lentz also had eight for Garfield-Palouse.

The next game for the Vikings was the following day with a game against the Genesee Bulldogs. The game was played on Thursday, Dec. 28.

The game saw the Vikings slow late, and come up short, losing to the Bulldogs 55-64.

The loss was the first loss for the Vikings in four games. Garfield-Palouse started their season with three-straight losses, then were on a four-game winning streak before their game against Genesee.

The Vikings were able to bounce back from their loss with a rout of Valley Christian on Friday, Dec. 29. The final score was in favor of Garfield-Palouse, who won 58-19.

Once again, the Vikings dominated the turnover game, gaining extra possessions by forcing turnovers and pressing after baskets to disrupt the Valley Christian offense.

On the offensive end, Flansburg, Brantner and Lentz lead the way for the Vikings. The team will go as far as the three will take them.

The Vikings team are in good hands for this season, and have the potential to be dominant for the next few years.

Jake Hull | The Gazette

Kyra Brantner looks for a kick-out pass for the Vikings in their game in Colton. The Vikings would improve their overall record to 5-4 on the year with two win in Colton.

Senior Zoe Laughary is the only girl basketball player graduating this year. Flansburg and Lentz are sophomores, and Brantner is a freshman, one of four on the team. There are also two juniors on the roster, Camryn Blankenchip and Hailey Beckner.

The Vikings team are growing in confidence with each passing game, and should fight for top spots in the district once February comes around.

The next game for the Vikings will be played on Friday, Jan. 5, against the Dayton Bulldogs. The game will be played in Palouse, and tip-off is set for 6 p.m.

 

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