B-K uses 3rd quarter surge to slide by Trojets

BLAIRSBURG – Molly Greenfield played out of her mind over the final 8 minutes in Northeast Hamilton’s regular season finale here last night, but her offensive explosion still wasn’t enough to get the Trojets across the finish line.

Competing on the hardwood she’s called home for the last four years for the final time, Greenfield, a senior forward, poured in a career-high 36 points in a 64-58 non-conference loss to Belmond-Klemme. She reeled off 21 of the Trojets’ 23 fourth-quarter points.

“Molly had a fantastic game and this is the way we’ve been harping on her to play all year,” NEH head coach Bret Schutt said. “They couldn’t stop her and I think she realized (last night) what she’s capable of.”

Greenfield knocked down 12 shots from the field and was 12 of 15 from the free throw line. She opened the game with three consecutive misses at the charity stripe before draining her final 12 attempts.

Down 24-23 at the half, Belmond-Klemme (2-20) put on an offensive clinic in the third quarter by going on a 27-11 run to forge ahead 50-35. Mackenzie Tenold, a freshman forward, scored four of her team-high 28 points during an early 8-0 spurt, and Olivia Kuhlers finished off the period by banking in a 3-pointer – her second 3 of the quarter and third of the game – to push the Broncos’ cushion to 15.

Greenfield picked up her fourth foul midway through the third quarter with NEH (6-15) trailing 36-28, and she didn’t see the court again until the start of the fourth.

“Molly had three fouls and (B-K) really tried to isolate her in the post with Tenold, and she was able to score and get comfortable,” Schutt said. “I’ll give them credit because it seemed like everything they threw up went in. They hit shot after shot after shot.”

Greenfield’s monstrous final surge closed the gap to as few as five points late in the fourth quarter.

Taylor Walrod added 19 points for the Broncos, who ended an 11-game losing streak heading into the postseason. Kuhlers finished with nine and Brianna High had six.

Sarah Elm rattled in a pair of 3s in the opening quarter to help the Trojets build an early 14-11 edge. She hit another 3 later en route to nine points. Jenn Willems chipped in eight points, but her contributions were limited after she went down with an injured leg in the first quarter.

Jennifer Jeffers had four points; she was the only Trojet besides Greenfield to score in the final period.

NEH will have a quick turnaround as it prepares to open up Class 1A regional play on Thursday in Latimer against CAL (3-18). The Trojets won a pair of regular season meetings over the Cadets – 59-28 on Nov. 27 in Blairsburg and 31-28 on Jan. 15 in Latimer.

“Everybody is 0-0 now and we get to hit restart on the season,” Schutt said. “Hopefully we can step up and respond to that.”