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2018-19 Elmwood-Murdock girls basketball team photo

MURDOCK – The Elmwood-Murdock girls created a festive atmosphere on their home court this weekend with a pair of point-scoring parties.

The Knights soared into the winner’s circle of the Elmwood-Murdock Holiday Tournament. E-M dominated Fort Calhoun in a first-round game Friday afternoon. The team then stopped Omaha Brownell-Talbot on Saturday to claim the championship.

Elmwood-Murdock 66, Fort Calhoun 38

Elmwood-Murdock routed the Pioneers with a balanced attack on offense. Ten Knights penciled their names in the scoring column and three players finished with double-digit point totals.

E-M put Fort Calhoun (1-7) in a difficult spot early in the game. The Knights sailed out to an 18-4 lead after eight minutes. Sydney Kunz, Jayden Halferty, Brenna Schmidt, Sydney Anderson, Bailey Frahm and Lauren Justesen all sank baskets in the opening stretch.

Elmwood-Murdock tacked on 19 points in the second quarter to create a 37-18 halftime gap. The team doubled up FCHS 40-20 early in the third quarter and led 54-28 in the fourth period.

Justesen helped the Knights with 16 points, five rebounds and one assist. Anderson collected 12 points and three boards and Halferty had ten points and two rebounds. Kunz chipped in nine points for E-M in the game.

Schmidt posted six points, Katelyn Vogler tallied four points and Frahm generated three points. Paetyn Florell had two points and two rebounds and Lexi Bacon and Nicole Wenzel each produced two points. Kylee Synovec grabbed two rebounds and Norina Higuchi and Morgan Mills each saw court time.

Elmwood-Murdock enjoyed a wide disparity in the number of looks at the basket. E-M took 77 shots and Fort Calhoun had 48 attempts from the field. The Knights made assists on 20 of their 28 field goals and drilled seven 3-pointers.

Fort Calhoun                4 14 6 14 – 38

Elmwood-Murdock    18 19 9 20 – 66

Elmwood-Murdock (66)

Kunz 3-8 1-2 9, Anderson 5-16 0-0 12, Halferty 5-14 0-2 10, Justesen 7-17 1-2 16, Synovec 0-6 0-0 0, Schmidt 3-5 0-0 6, Florell 1-2 0-0 2, Vogler 1-3 1-2 4, Bacon 1-1 0-0 2, Frahm 1-1 0-0 3, Wenzel 1-1 0-0 2, Mills 0-3 0-0 0, Higuchi 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 28-77 3-8 66.

Elmwood-Murdock 54, Omaha Brownell-Talbot 47

Justesen put on a scoring showcase against the Raiders in the title game. She blistered Omaha Brownell-Talbot with a career-best 34 points. Justesen finished 11-of-21 from the floor and 12-of-13 at the free-throw line.

E-M went ahead 6-1 after Anderson sank a mid-range jumper midway through the first quarter. Justesen ended the stanza with three straight baskets for E-M, and Synovec’s 15-foot jumper gave the team a 19-12 advantage.

Justesen then went to work against the Raiders (6-3) in the second half. She produced 13 points in the third quarter on five baskets and three free throws. She then scored all 14 of the team’s points in the final period. Her short jumper snapped a 47-47 tie late in the game, and she drained her final five free-throw attempts to seal the victory.

Anderson generated nine points during the day and Halferty finished with four points. Vogler produced three points, Synovec had two points and Wenzel and Florell each scored one point.

Elmwood-Murdock (3-7) will resume its season Jan. 4 with a 6 p.m. home game against Johnson County Central. The Knights will then travel to Oakland-Craig Jan. 5 for a 3 p.m. matchup.

Omaha Brownell-Talbot       9 14 10 14 – 47

Elmwood-Murdock              11 13 16 14 – 54

Elmwood-Murdock (54)

Kunz 0-7 0-0 0, Anderson 3-16 3-3 9, Halferty 2-6 0-0 4, Justesen 11-21 12-13 34, Florell 0-5 1-4 1, Synovec 1-1 0-0 2, Schmidt 0-9 0-2 0, Vogler 1-6 0-0 3, Wenzel 0-4 1-4 1, Frahm 0-2 0-0 0, Bacon 0-0 0-0 0. Totals 18-77 17-26 54.

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