Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Princeton Can't Climb Out of 17-2 Hole vs. NEN Girls

Northeast Nodaway's girls jumped out to an early 17-2 lead against Princeton and made it stand up against the blue Tigers as they advanced to the second round of the South Harrison Tournament last Tuesday. Princeton made a comeback bid in the second quarter, coming to as close as nine, but a strong third quarter for Northeast turned back the rally and they cruised to victory, 55-38. The game was not as close as the final score indicated as Princeton left their starters in against Northeast's second string in the last few minutes of the fourth quarter.

For Northeast, it was one of the best ballhandling teams that they had faced this year; Princeton surrendered the ball a season-low 18 times against Northeast. Even South Harrison surrendered the ball more against Northeast, giving it up 26 times. This forced Northeast to find other ways to win the game; however, they succeeded by running their half-court offense as sharply as they had all year and by containing the guard duo of Felisha Bertrand and Cassie Teeter, who were constant threats to take it to the hole.

Blair Schmitz (14 points) opened the scoring for Northeast by getting behind the Princeton defense and getting a feed from Jacqueline Schulte (15 points) for the layup. This was a constant theme -- Princeton's guards would constantly try and attack the basket and rely on their offensive rebounding to clean up on misses. However, when Northeast controlled the boards, as they did in the first, third, and fourth quarters, that meant there was nobody back on defense and their transition game was still there. Michelle Schulte (13 points) then got back to back steals; the first time, she fed Kristin Sherry for the layup and the second time, she connected on two free throws. Michelle Schulte then got behind the Princeton defense for a layup to make it 8-0.

At that point, Blair Schmitz and Kristin Sherry, two of Northeast's best rebounders, picked up their second fouls and had to sit out; that meant that Princeton was able to control the boards for much of the remainder of the half. But after Shelby Bennett got a layup after a loose ball caromed right at her, Jacqueline Schulte went on a personal 9-0 run to give Northeast some badly-needed cushion. She started off by posting up inside and scoring; she followed with a drive and a 3-point play; she then got a steal and drive, and then connected from the right baseline after an inbounds play to make it 17-2.

Princeton began chipping away, getting a free throw from Bennett, a drive and pullup from Teeter, and a steal and drive from Bertrand to cut it to 17-7 with 51.7 seconds left. Blair Schmitz came back in at the start of the second quarter and gave Northeast some scoring punch to counter Princeton's offensive rebounding game. Michelle Schulte and Emily Bryant both connected from the left wing to make it 21-7. The teams traded scores for much of the next few minutes, with Schmitz hitting a pair of inside shots and four free throws to put Northeast up 29-14 to match its biggest lead of the game. But then Northeast began missing some good looks on the offensive end and struggling on the defensive glass as Princeton started to come back. Bennett scored from inside, Teeter got a free throw, and Danessa Derry converted a 3-point play in a 6-0 run that got the lead back under double digits. Jacqueline Schulte got loose on the weak side with 23 seconds for Northeast, but Shelby Bennett countered from the right wing to put Princeton to within 31-22.

Princeton had every reason to think they had the momentum, but both Schmitz and Sherry were smart enough not to get into any more foul trouble and the Bluejays put a clinic on against Princeton's defense. On the other end, Northeast would hold Princeton to one shot and out, meaning that the blue Tigers' game plan of getting drives by Teeter and Bertrand and medium range shots simply meant quick scores on the other end. And the Bluejays forced the left-handed Teeter to go right and the right-handed Bertrand to go left; the Princeton guards were not nearly as effective with their off-hand as they were with their dominant hand.

Hallie Oelze opened the scoring for Northeast with a shot from the left wing to start an 8-0 run to begin the third quarter. Kristin Sherry followed with a shot from the left baseline, followed by a fast break from Jacqueline Schulte. Blair Schmitz got left alone for an 18-footer from the top of the key, a big mistake as her sweet left-handed shot was nothing but net. Danessa Derry countered by getting behind the Northeast defense for a basket, but the backbreaker came on the ensuing possession. Michelle Schulte connected from the left side and drew the foul; she missed the free throw, but Blair Schmitz was there for the rebound and she went to the rim for the four-point play. That left Northeast up 43-24 at the 4:11 mark, and the rout was on. Following a stop, Blair Schmitz threw a long outlet to Michelle Schulte, whose layup went in. Michelle Schulte added a free throw and then Jacqueline Schulte had a nice cut to get open and drew contact with her runner and made both free throws. That left Northeast up 48-24 after three quarters of play.

Emily Bryant cut straight down the middle of the lane and made the layup to open scoring in the fourth quarter. Michelle Schulte showed some stubbornness of a good kind when she got behind the Princeton defense and but missed a layup. She got her own rebound and missed again. This time, the ball went to the other side of the basket, but she ran over to wrest the ball from a Princeton player and this time, drew the two-shot foul and knocked down both her free throws. Kenzie Waldeier added a free throw and later connected from the right baseline to give Northeast its biggest lead of the night at 55-26.

Tigers Beat South Nodaway 53-34 for Consolation Trophy

Worth County's boys contained the 6'7" Zach Hilsabeck and were able to beat the South Nodaway Longhorns 53-34 to take consolation in the Stanberry Tournament as Bryce Ross led a balanced attack with 13 points for Worth County. It was the play of Ross which made a big difference for the Tigers, who had been searching for answers following a string of close losses as he followed his 23-point night against North Andrew with 13 more against South Nodaway. The Tiger freshman's output led a balanced attack as five different Tigers scored six or more points. Todd Harding added 12, Dylan Kinsella (going up against Hilsabeck) had 9, Eli Mullock 8, and Zach Harmening 6.

The Tigers had played South Nodaway four other times during summer ball and winter. In the games which the Tigers won handily, they were able to speed the game up against the Longhorns, while when South Nodaway was able to make a game out of it, they were able to slow the game down. The Longhorns were able to dictate the tempo against Albany in the consolation round, slowing the game to a glacial pace and beating the Warriors 32-23 for their first win of the year.

South Nodaway got an early 3-0 lead on the Tigers as they were hacking and fouling early. But then Bryce Ross began right where he left off last year as he got a kickout from J.J. Mullock to start his night with a jumper from the left wing. Eli Mullock added a pair of free throws and then Bryce Ross connected from the right baseline and then got a steal off the press to make it 8-3. For some reason, South Nodaway did not come out in their usual 2-3 zone, but tried to play a man to man, giving the quicker Worth County squad some easy driving lanes to work with. The Tigers were not having the best of shooting nights, having to shoot over Hilsabeck all night, but they more than made up for it by outworking the Longhorns on the boards.

Finally, South Nodaway switched back to their zone and were more effective with it. Dillon Heath had a drive to the basket and then South Nodaway added a fast break against the Tiger press after a free throw from Ross to cut Worth County's lead to 9-7. But then Eli Mullock got a kickout from Todd Harding with 25 seconds left in the first quarter and scored from the left wing to make it 11-7 after one quarter.

Hilsabeck opened the scoring for South Nodaway with a fast break and Ross answered with a baseline jumper following a Tiger steal off the press to make it 13-9. There was a long scoring lull as Worth County was out of control at times on offense and South Nodaway could not set up in their offense or buy a defensive board. Finally, Dillon Heath hit a pair of free throws to cut South Nodaway's deficit to 13-11. The Longhorns took Hilsabeck out and went to the diamond press that had worked against Albany in their last game, but the move backfired as Dylan Kinsella scored from inside and Todd Harding went coast to coast to put Worth County up 17-11 at the 2:50 mark.

Zach Hilsabeck checked back in and did all he could to keep South Nodaway close as the rest seemed to rejuvinate him. Worth County tried switching to a 2-3 zone to contain him, but he took a lob pass and scored over two defenders with 1:59 left. Zach Harmening countered with a couple of free throws and then Alex Harmening got a steal off a trap on the wing and kicked it to Jordan Harding underneath the South Nodaway basket. Harding threw a full length of the court baseball pass to Todd Harding, whose layup gave Worth County its biggest lead at 21-13.

But Hilsabeck kept right on coming as he converted a 3-point play after scoring over three Tiger defenders; Eli Mullock scored off a drive in which he had a nice pullup jumper in the paint from 12 feet, but Hilsabeck once again scored over three defenders to cut South Nodaway's deficit to 23-18 with 25 seconds left in the half. South Nodaway got another chance following a blocked shot by Hilsabeck and Brandon Cozine's half court shot, which might have changed the momentum of the game, went in and out at the buzzer.

Brock Ferguson got behind the Tiger defense just two seconds into the second half for a layup, but then someone forgot to account for Eli Mullock, who got behind the South Nodaway defense and hit two free throws. Following a Tiger stop, J.J. Mullock couldn't corral an errant pass into the post, but he managed to tip it towards Zach Harmening, who hustled in, grabbed it, and put it down. Mike Medsker hit a free throw for South Nodaway, but Dylan Kinsella scored from inside over Hilsabeck and converted the 3-point play for Worth County. On the other end, Kinsella then knocked away a pass intended for Hilsabeck. It caromed right to Medsker, who attempted to score from the right baseline, but Kinsella came sprinting over to reject the shot and grab the rebound. Then, he muscled his way free of Hilsabeck, got some separation, and made another bucket over him for a 32-21 lead.

South Nodaway made a comeback bid from there as Hilsabeck hit one out of two free throws and then Dillon Heath's driving layup cut Worth County's lead to 32-24. The Longhorns got a steal and a wide open layup that would have cut it to six, but they missed the shot and Zach Harmening alertly grabbed the defensive board and went coast to coast the other way for a 34-24 lead -- that was a four point swing in Worth County's favor.

Brock Ferguson kncoked down a free throw and then South Nodaway began outworking Worth County, chasing down offensive caroms and reversing roles during the next sequence. But then Brandon Corzine's 3-pointer that would have cut the deficit to six started a series of four straight plays in which South Nodaway failed to cut it to 6 or 7 as his shot went halfway down and then caromed out. Cole Buffington then managed to pressure Hilsabeck hard and force an airball; the Longhorns then got another steal, but for the second time in the quarter, missed a wide open layup. Finally, following their fourth consecutive miss, they overextended trying to get the ball back and Todd Harding went coast to coast for a 3-point play in a backbreaking sequence that put the game out of reach. Alex Harmening then scored his only points of the game, a 3-pointer at the third quarter buzzer with a defender in his face. At the start of the fourth quarter, J.J. tipped an errant lob pass intended for Hilsabeck to Alex Harmening, who threw to Eli Mullock on the outlet; Eli Mullock aired it out to Todd Harding, who once against got behind the South Nodaway defense to put Worth County up 42-25.

Hilsabeck then scored from inside, but then Dylan Kinsella got a putback over Hilsabeck and then Alex Harmening stripped Hilsabeck in the post and aired it out to Bryce Ross with 5:39 to make it 46-27. Hilsabeck got another inside shot, but then Bryce Ross cut to the high post and scored off a Dylan Kinsella kickout, Todd Harding once again got behind the Longhorn defense (this time, following a defensive board), and Worth County took a huge chunk of time off the clock and got the ball to Harding in the high post for their biggest lead of the night at 51-29. Grant Parman scored a pair of free throws with 22.5 seconds left for the Tigers following a tieup by Wyatt McClain on defense.

Tiger Boys Break Losing Streak With Vengance

Worth County's boys broke out of their losing streak with a vengance as they beat North Andrew 56-37 in consolation bracket action in the Stanberry Tournament Wednesday. The Tigers beat a North Andrew team that had only one win, a 62-43 blowout of North Nodaway after the first of the year. However, the Cardinals had played all of their other teams tough, with their biggest margin of defeat before Wednesday night being 13 points. The Cardinals had a post player in Josh Pittman who was a handful to guard; he has been the dominant scorer for the North Andrew squad. However, the Tigers held him to four points in the first half of Wednesday's encounter, and he did not get going until it was too late.

The outcome of this game was never in doubt as the Tigers jumped on North Andrew early. The play of Bryce Ross was key in the game as the Tiger freshman had a career high of 23 points; the Tigers were constantly working the ball to him in the short corner of the North Andrew zone, and he was hitting all of his shots. And the Tigers collected a ton of turnovers from North Andrew as they followed the lead of Northeast Nodaway's girls in putting extreme pressure on the ball all over the court, forcing 35 Cardinal turnovers throughout the course of the game. And it helped that North Andrew missed a ton of easy shots around the basket, which amounted to even more turnovers for the Cardinal squad.

Worth County jumped on North Andrew 8-0 in the first three minutes of the game as Zach Harmening scored from inside and Bryce Ross scored off an Alex Harmening steal. After Zach Harmening took a charge for Worth County, J.J. Mullock scored one over Pittman and Eli Mullock collected a steal and drive. Pittman finally hit a pair of free throws at the 3:49 mark to break the shutout, but Zach Harmening drove down the right side of the lane and put a nice fake on a defender for the layup. Todd Harding followed with another drive and got a high-arching shot to go down over Pittman. Bryce Ross followed with a drive to put Worth County up 14-2 after one quarter of play.

Ross continued to carry the Tigers at the start of the second as he slipped into the short corner for an 8-footer and then took a charge on the next play. Zach Harmening followed with a steal, which he converted into a free throw; Jordan Harding hit two free throws and Alex Harmening hit one as Worth County led 20-2 at the 4:30 mark. North Andrew hung around for the rest of the half as Worth County was constantly hacking and fouling trying to keep the ball out of Pittman's hands and they were missing a ton of free throws when they went to the line. The teams traded buckets for the rest of the half, when Worth County went into the lockerroom with a 27-9 lead.

Pittman hit a pair of free throws to start the second half, but then Dylan Kinsella connected from the left baseline to start a 13-0 run for Worth County. Bryce Ross got behind the Cardinal defense following a miss, Todd Harding hit from the top of the key, Ross completed a 3-point play following a take to the basket, Zach Harmening scored off a Ross steal, and Ross slipped the zone for a baseline shot to put Worth County up 40-11 with 3:56 left in the third. At that point the Cardinals switched to a man to man and the referees, seemingly trying to make their quota of fouls called for the game, began calling everything for both sides, dragging the game out for what seemed like all night. Consequently, the game developed into a snoozefest, which favored North Andrew. Pittman had five points and Drew Beggs three in an 8-1 North Andrew run that cut Worth County's lead to 41-19 at the 7:21 mark of the fourth quarter. Pittman then connected from inside at the 6:19 mark to cut Worth County's lead to 43-23.

Worth County took back control as Bryce Ross scored from the right side and Todd Harding hit a 3-pointer from the wing to make it 48-23. Pittman kept scoring, but Dylan Kinsella scored inside and Todd Harding finally got a pair of free throws to go down for Worth County, putting the game out of reach at 52-26 with 4:01 left. North Andrew reeled off an 11-0 run in garbage time, most of it from the line, before Worth County answered at the end with a pair of free throws from Ross and a drive by Todd Harding in the last minute.

Monday, January 18, 2010

Schulte, Sherry, Oelze Come Through in Clutch vs. Cameron

Jacqueline Schulte, Kristin Sherry, and Hallie Oelze all came through in the clutch against Cameron in the semifinal round of the South Harrison Tournament and Northeast beat the Cameron Dragons 46-44 to advance to the championship round. For Schulte, it was her fourth game-winning shot in a year; she had 25 points against a stingy Dragon defense, the best defensive team that Northeast has faced this year. And none were more important than her tiebreaking bucket with 57 seconds left that put Northeast in front for good after the Bluejays had lost the lead. Kristin Sherry, who had been a quiet role player all year for Northeast, doing all of the little things to make the team click, came through on the free throw line throughout the fourth quarter, hitting seven of eight from the line. And at the end when Northeast needed to make it a two-possession game, the bank was open for Hallie Oelze as she connected both times when she went to the line.

It was easily the most physical game that Northeast has played all year, with Blair Schmitz getting a badge of honor, a huge bump on her face from diving after a loose ball, to show for it. Anna Curtis, the best point guard that Northeast has seen this year, did all she could to keep Cameron in the game and give them a chance at the end. But Northeast continued their uncanny ability to win these close games that they showed both last summer and last year. "When Cameron took the lead on us, we kept right on playing," said Coach Ryan Davis. "We've had experience in these types of situations, and this is when confidence and team chemistry pays off."

Azalee Morgan hit two free throws to put Cameron up 2-0, but Blair Schmitz converted a 3-point play at the 5:38 mark in the first to put Northeast up 3-2. Kelly Thompson scored from inside to put Cameron up, but Schmitz went straight to the rim and Jacqueline Schulte posted up and took a high-low pass from Schmitz. Michelle Schulte then got a steal and missed the layup, but got her own board and kicked it out to Schmitz to put Northeast up 9-4. Raelene Blanton hit a free throw and back to back steals from Curtis tied it at 9 with 35 seconds left. But in an omen of things to come, Jacqueline Schulte drove the lane and beat the buzzer like she has so many times before to put Northeast up 11-9 after one quarter.

A critical play of the game happened in the second quarter when Blair Schmitz took a charge on Raelene Blanton, who picked up her third foul. This seemed to take the wind out of Cameron's sails, as the Dragons were much more effective when she was in the game. With Northeast doubling Curtis on the press, forcing the ball out of her hands, they were able to get a lead on the Dragons. Hallie Oelze hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key and then Schmitz hit a free throw at the 5:10 mark to put Northeast up 15-9. Blanton came back in at that point, but promptly picked up her fourth foul as Cameron was unable to mount a comeback bid in the period. Curtis' shot from the left wing cut Northeast's lead to 15-11, but Jacqueline Schulte tipped a missed shot to Michelle, whose putback went in; following a turnover by Cameron, Jacqueline knocked down a pair of free throws to put Northeast up 19-11. Cameron chipped away as Curtis hit from the top of the key and Morgan connected from the line, but following a long possession, Jacqueline Schulte drove down the right baseline with 46 seconds left and connected to put Northeast up 21-14 at the break.

The third quarter started off well for Northeast; Blair Schmitz, who had been playfully swatting away some of Jacqueline Schulte's shots during second half warmups, did so in earnest on consecutive plays. First, she swatted Curtis who was trying to attack the rim; Jacqueline Schulte went straight down the middle for the layup. Then it happened again as Schmitz rejected Kelly Thompson; on the ensuing possession, Schulte buried a 3-pointer from the right wing to give Northeast its biggest lead at 26-14.

At that point Cameron made some adjustments to get back in the game as they began pushing the ball up the floor and attacking the basket more. Baskets by Thompson and Caroline Lowenstein made it 26-18, but then nobody matched up with Jacqueline Schulte, whose layup with 4:06 left put Northeast back in front by double digits. But then Blair Schmitz got her bruise in the face going after a loose ball and had to sit out for the rest of the quarter. And following a free throw from Raelene Blanton, who was back in the game with four fouls, the Dragons went to a half court trap with some success. Curtis' fast break cut it to 28-21.

Jacqueline Schulte countered by driving on Lowenstein and drawing her fifth foul; she made both. She then made one out of two from the line to put Northeast up 31-21. Curtis got loose on the left baseline for Cameron, but Schulte got a steal and drive with 36 seconds left to make it 33-23. But then Cameron, who had been routinely beating Northeast's press in the last few minutes of the period, burned it twice as Skylar Miller twice got loose on the weak side for uncontested layups that brought Cameron to within six. "That was my fault," said Coach Ryan Davis; "The kids did great all night long; I should have taken the press off earlier when they were starting to break it like that."

Cameron had a chance to cut it to four, but missed two wide-open layups and Kristin Sherry, who had not scored up to that point, made her first two free throws to put Northeast back up eight. But Cameron still had the momentum at that point; Azalee Morgan and the rest of the Dragons were crashing the boards a lot more in the fourth than they were the rest of the game. Morgan converted a third chance bucket and later hit a pair of free throws to make it 35-31 at the 5:04 mark, still plenty of time. Raelene Blanton picked up her fifth foul grabbing Kristin Sherry's jersey and Sherry hit two more free throws with 4:42 left to make it 37-31. But even that play did not break Cameron's momentum as they began hitting from outside; baskets by Kelly Thompson and Skylar Miller sandwiched around a Northeast turnover made it 37-35 at the 3:01 mark. Kristin Sherry made one out of two from the line to make it a three-point game, but Morgan continued to work the boards, making three out of four free throws as Cameron finally knotted the game at 38 with 2:17 left.

Blair Schmitz fouled out and Kelly Thompson hit a free throw to put Cameron up 39-38, but then Jacqueline Schulte began taking over the game as she drove straight down the lane and drew the foul, connecting on both shots. She then got a steal and fed Michelle Schulte, but her off-balance runner was no good and Jessica Redden fouled Taeloree VanBrunt, whose free throw with 1:24 left knotted it at 40. Schulte drove down the lane again and missed this time, but Anna Curtis, who had been lights-out all night, made a rare mistake when she traveled, giving Jacqueline another chance. This time Schulte would not be denied as she drove down the middle of the lane once again. This time, she banked home her shot with 57 seconds left to put Northeast up for good at 42-40. And Schulte was not finished as she would come up with a critical play on the other end. Kelly Thompson missed a tough shot from outside that would have tied it and then Schulte pushed a Cameron player out of the way and got the defensive board for Northeast. On the ensuing possession, Cameron had to foul and Kristin Sherry was the Ice Lady as she connected for two more to make her total seven for eight from the line in the fourth quarter.

With 21 seconds left, Curtis drove down the right side and drew a foul on Hallie Oelze; she connected on both her free throws with 21 seconds left to make it 44-42. But then Cameron sent the wrong person to the line as the bank was open for Hallie Oelze; her first free throw banked home and her second was nothing but net to put Northeast up 46-42 with 15.8 seconds. Cameron pushed down the floor and got a putback from Azalee Morgan to make it 46-44 with 8 seconds left, but Curtis picked up her fifth foul as Michelle Schulte went to the line with 3.5 seconds. Michelle missed both her free throws but without Curtis, Cameron was unable to get the ball up the floor to get a shot off.

Farnan's Shot Lifts NEN Boys Over Elwood

Like the Trenton game, Northeast Nodaway's boys could not buy a stop against Elwood in the losers bracket game in the South Harrison Tournament last Wednesday. But unlike the Trenton game, Northeast was able to get their shots to go in. Since they were struggling defensively against an explosive Elwood squad that they will face again in Platte Valley Conference play, the only way they could win against the Panthers was to keep scoring. And Bryce Farnan's 3-point shot with 48 seconds left gave them the 75-74 win; the Bluejays would go on to get the one stop they needed most to escape with the win.

Both Bryce Farnan and Tyler Davis got going early against the Elwood squad that has nobody over six feet listed on the roster. Farnan opened the scoring with an inside shot, followed by a pair of inside shots from Davis that put Northeast up 6-2. Farnan followed with a drive to the basket and drew the foul; he missed the free throw, but Colby Wiederholt was there for the putback. Davis followed with a free throw following a Northeast steal and the Bluejays were up 11-4.

Elwood began making use of their speed as Bryson Wilson and Blaine Wilson both got behind the Northeast defense to cut it to 11-8, but Colby Wiederholt got the hot hand as he scored on another putback, a fast break, and a pair of free throws. Blaine Wilson countered with a free throw, but Wiederholt got a drive to the basket to put Northeast up 19-9 at the 1:52 mark. But Bryson Wilson, who can light things up from NBA range, connected on a 3-pointer to spark an Elwood run towards the end of the first quarter. Damien Shaffer followed with a shot from the left side; later, Bryson's second three-pointer of the quarter cut Northeast's lead to three before Colby Wiederholt's drive down the left wing with nine seconds left put Northeast back up 23-18 after one quarter.

Tyler Davis opened the second quarter with a 3-point play and then Wiederholt's crive and Bryce Farnan's inside shot following a high-low pass from James Burns put Northeast up 34-25 at the 5:15 mark. But then Keyton Harrington got a steal and drive to break the run and then the two teams settled into a stretch where neither side could stop each other. Northeast could not stop the quicker Panther squad while Elwood had no answer for Northeast getting the ball into their three post players at will. The teams traded buckets for most of the remainder of the second quarter until Keegon Harrington got a steal with 34 seconds left to cut Northeast's lead to 43-40. Colby Wiederholt was fouled after a scramble and he made one of two free throws to put Northeast up 44-40 at the half.

Elwood came out of the gates in the third quarter hoping to duplicate Trenton's feat and turn the tables. Josh Wideman hit a 3-pointer for Northeast from the left baseline to put Northeast up 47-42 early, but Elwood began working the ball into Keegon Harrington inside, and he had a personal 5-0 run to tie the game up at 47. But Northeast was not going away as they slowed the game down and began showing more patience on offense instead of trying to get into a track meet with the Panthers. Bryce Farnan scored from inside to break the tie; Aaron Patton hit a 3-pointer from the right baseline, which seemed to open up the inside for Northeast. Tyler Davis converted a 3-point play following a long possession; inside shots from Bryce Farnan and Davis gave Northeast its biggest lead of the game at 59-47 at the 2:41 mark of the third.

But then Elwood switched to a press and got right back in the game; Bryson Wilson started the run by converting a 3-point play. That sparked a 12-2 Elwood run that made it 61-59 at the end of three as Northeast began having some of the same sort of lapses that cost them against Trenton. Davis opened the scoring for Northeast with an inside shot to make it 63-59 and Northeast went to the 1-3-1 that worked against Trenton, but Blaine Wilson got a driving layup and then Bryson Wilson followed with consecutive steals to give Elwood its first lead of the game at 65-63. After the teams traded buckets, Elwood got the ball back with under five minutes left with a chance to make it a two-possession game, but Bryce Farnan took a charge.

Free throws by Desmond Davis and a fast break by Blaine Wilson when Northeast overextended trying to get the ball back put Elwood up 71-68 at the 2:08 mark, but Tyler Davis got hammered and got on the line. He made the first and missed the second, but Bryce Farnan was there for the putback to tie it at 71. After the teams traded free throws, Keyton Harrington got a driving layup with 1:05 left to put Elwood up 74-72 with 1:05 left, but Bryce Farnan hit a 3-pointer from the left wing to put Northeast up 75-74 with 48 seconds left.

In a frantic high-scoring game, the defenses took over during the last seconds of the game. First, Elwood, trying to attack the time, lost it on a turnover with 24 seconds left as James Burns knocked it out off an Elwood player. Then, Northeast could not break the Elwood press and Colby Wiederholt threw away a pass with 14 seconds that gave Elwood a chance to win it. Elwood tried to work the right baseline, but Josh Wideman knocked the ball away from Bryson Wilson and out of bounds with 5 seconds left. Elwood inbounded the ball underneath the basket and they threw it up top to try and set up a drive down the middle for the game-winning shot. But they fumbled the ball around at the top of the key and Keyton Harrington's off-balance 12-footer at the buzzer was well short of the mark.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Trenton Hangs 31 on Bluejay Boys in 3rd

It seemed like it would be another win for the Bluejay boys; they were cruising along against Trenton, working the inside at will, and getting stops on the other end in the opening round game of the South Harrison Tournament last Tuesday. But all of a sudden, in a reversal of fortune, Northeast suffered a shocking collapse in the third quarter, giving up 31 points to Trenton in the period and falling to the Bulldogs 69-54.

Garth Griswold opened the scoring with a 3-pointer from the left corner for Trenton, but Bryce Farnan hit a free throw, Chad Messner score from inside, and Tyler Davis scored after a putback to put Northeast up 5-3 at the 5:47 mark. Dakota Banks grabbed a putback to tie it at 5, but Josh Wideman cleaned up after a missed layup following a steal and converted a 3-point play and Colby Wiederholt followed with a steal and drive with 4:32 left to put Northeast up for a long time. Trenton was bothered by Northeast's press and the Bluejays were stealing the ball off the press similar to what the girls have done all year. The lead grew to seven as Bryce Farnan and Colby Wiederholt added free throws before Austin Norris hit a 3-pointer with 43 seconds to close to within 13-9 after one period.

Nothing was dropping for Northeast for long stretches in the second quarter, but they were able to maintain their lead by getting to the line and playing strong defense. The teams traded buckets through most of the period before Bobby Welch hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key to make it 23-16. Bryce Farnan hit with a free throw and a cut inside to give Northeast its biggest lead of the night at 26-16. Austin Norris got a putback for Trenton, but Tyler Davis scored from the short corner against Trenton's zone to put Northeast back up 28-18 at the break.

Trenton started off the third quarter with a 9-2 run that cut Northeast's lead to 30-27. Bryce Farnan stepped through two defenders to put Northeast back up 32-27, but then Colby Wiederholt picked up his third foul and sat down. That seemed to open up the floodgates for Trenton and all hell broke loose as Northeast would stand around on offense and not run their plays and throw up a quick shot that would not go in. Trenton would push the ball down and get a 3-pointer from one of their many shooters and then the cycle would repeat itself. The problem was made worse by the fact that the Bluejays were not matching up on defense, leaving people all alone. The Bulldogs used a 10-0 run to go up 37-32 before Tyler Davis broke the run with a putback to make it 37-34. Colby Wiederholt checked back in, but promptly picked up his fourth foul and the dam burst again as the Bulldogs continued to rain 3-pointers and fast breaks on Northeast until they were able to take a 49-36 lead.

Finally, Bryce Farnan hit a 3-pointer with 13 seconds left in the disastrous fourth quarter to bring Northeast back to within ten. Northeast switched to a 1-3-1 to start the fourth quarter which seemed to throw Trenton off balance enough to let them back in the game. James Burns opened the scoring with an inside shot, followed by a 3-pointer from the wing from Chad Messner. James Burns cut inside and Bryce Farnan fed him a long pass from clear in the backcourt for a layup; Tyler Davis hit a 3-pointer from the right baseline to cap the 13-0 run and tie the game at 49. Dakota Banks hit a free throw for Trenton, but Tyler Davis answered with a free throw of his own to tie it up again at 50.

But then nobody matched up on 3-point shooter Garth Griswold, whose 3-pointer from the left baseline put Trenton up for good at 53-50. Colby Wiederholt countered with a pair of free throws to make it 53-52, but the defensive lapses down the stretch proved fatal as nobody was paying attention to Brennon Vandevender, who hit a pair of inside shots, or helping on defense, leading to a backdoor layup by Dakota Banks. These buckets put Trenton up 59-52 and the Bulldogs made a ton of free throws down the stretch to account for the final score.

Bluejay Boys Snakebit in 3rd Quarter Again

Northeast Nodaway's boys once again struggled coming out of the lockerroom at halftime and fell to North Harrison 49-38 as they were denied consolation at the South Harrison Tournament Friday night. In their two previous games, they struggled defensively and couldn't buy a stop; this time, they held the Shamrocks to 49 points but could not buy a bucket. The boys were suffering what Coach Charley Burch called a lack of confidence; that showed up most prominently in the box score. Tyler Davis and Bryce Farnan each had 16 points for the night. However, the rest of the team only had six points combined, meaning that nobody else could solve the Shamrock 1-2-2 zone, which sagged on the inside and dared Northeast to shoot over them. The other glaring stat was only five fouls called on North Harrison, meaning that Northeast was not doing enough to draw contact and get on the line when they were not making shots. Northeast did not go to the line once the whole game.

Northeast came out focusing on Ryan Cox, one of several sharpshooters the Shamrocks have on their team. But they could not buy a bucket on their own end until Bryce Farnan finally put back a miss and Tyler Davis scored from inside following a Shamrock turnover to put Northeast up 4-2 with 4:03 left. North Harrison began looking to establish the high-low and got it to Tanner Bowen inside; Bowen followed with a free throw to put North Harrison up 5-4 at the 2:16 mark. Farnan countered with an inside shot, but Cox hit a 3-pointer from the top of the key that sparked a 6-0 run that put North Harrison up 12-6.

Tyler Davis then ran over a Shamrock defender to spark a Northeast run; his layup cut it to 12-8 with 24 seconds left. Cox hit from the left wing at the buzzer, but James Burns tipped an offensive carom to Davis for a layup; Davis cleaned up after a Chad Messner runner that was off the mark and hit a 3-pointer from the left wing to put Northeast up 15-14. Northeast went to the same 1-3-1 defense that threw Trenton off-balance at the start of the fourth quarter. But then consecutive steals by North Harrison in the last minute of the period put them back ahead 18-15.

The second half was a completely different game from the first. Garren Gibson opened the scoring for North Harrison with a putback at the 7:18 mark; from there, Northeast struggled to solve the diamond press that the Shamrocks put on; Coach Burch cited Northeast's turnovers during the game as critical. On the other end, Northeast could not buy a defensive board against the smaller Shamrock squad, who scored nine points in just over a two-minute span and threatened to repeat the Trenton debacle.

Northeast broke the run behind a baseline shot from Tyler Davis and a putback by Colby Wiederholt as they put on a press of their own to break the run. But then Tanner Bowen got a steal for North Harrison and later grabbed a putback in the closing seconds of the period to put them up 31-19.

The Shamrocks had trouble protecting big leads last year, but they had no such trouble Friday night as they answered a Bryce Farnan 3-pointer with three free throws from Ryan Cox and a baseline shot form Garren Gibson to go up 36-22; Northeast could not get the lead under double digits again. Chad Messner's shot from the right wing put the lead to 38-27 with 4:36 left, but then North Harrison began driving at will on Northeast as they were forced to extend their defense to try and get the ball back; Tanner Bowen's driving layup with 2:20 left capped a 6-0 run that gave them their biggest lead of the night at 44-27. Northeast would not get closer than the final score despite two 3-pointers from Bryce Farnan and one from Tyler Davis in the last two minutes of the game.

Relief Supplies for Haiti

HI All-
Please choose to be part of the relief for Haiti

SCC has missionary friends in Haiti that are giving vital relief to those hurting

Dee & Wilckly Dorce have been missionaries in Haiti for several years now

Items Needed:
Over the counter medications for pain, cold & cough; triple antibiotic ointments; medicinal alcohol, peroxide, clorox
Wounds supplies-any & all sizes of bandages, dressings, & medical tape
old carpet remnants & tarps for the refugees staying on their property to be protected from the ground & dew/rain
iodine for water treatment
Prayer! Prayer! Prayer!

Please have all your supplies to SCC by Wednesday, January 20, at noon…these items will be delivered to Maryville to be loaded on a crate to be taken to Haiti on the following Monday

Thank you!

For more information please call me @ 660.254.0784 or email @ preacherjeff@sheridancc.com

Jeff Blaine
Sheridan Christian Church

Bluejay Girls Fall Hard vs. Tall, Quick South Harrison

The bubble finally burst for Northeast Nodaway's girls as they gave up a 30-0 run to South Harrison late in the second quarter and early in the third and fell to them 67-39 in the championship game of the South Harrison Tournament Saturday. The Bluejays were beaten by a combination of foul trouble as well as a team that was taller and quicker than any team they had faced so far. The Bulldogs showed little layoff from the graduation of 6'1" 3-point shooter and point guard Kelsey Butler; they featured 6'2" mobile athletic post player Mysti Williams, a 6-foot guard who can beat people off the dribble or from outside in Whitney Bennett, another 5'10 post player in Amanda Wendt, and a deadly shooter in Tiara Pettijohn. The scary thing about it for future South Harrison opponents is that they didn't even play 6-footer Kelly Kern, a deadly clutch player, who was out with an injury.

Northeast hung with South Harrison for the first one and a half quarters. They got down early as Williams stepped outside and hit a 3-pointer to ignite South Harrison; Jessica Prewitt would then get behind the Northeast defense and give them a 5-2 lead. But the Bluejays settled down and solved the diamond press that South Harrison threw at them. In the meantime, Williams picked up two quick fouls and sat on the bench for an extended period of time. Jacqueline Schulte's 3-pointer from the baseline tied it; Kristin Sherry followed with a baseline jumper and Schulte got the ball into Blair Schmitz to put Northeast up 9-5 with 5:53 left. But then Pettijohn, who was constantly pushing the ball up the floor all night, got behind the Bluejay press twice for layups and Whitney Bennett beat a Northeast defender off the drive for the first of many times to give South Harrison an 11-9 lead.

Jacqueline Schulte kicked a pass out to Kristin Sherry on the baseline, but would then pick up her second foul and sit on the bench for the rest of the period. Michelle Schulte followed her own miss after a drive against the much taller South Harrison players and Northeast was up 13-11. But Bennett countered by hitting some free throws late in the period to put South Harrison up 14-13 after one quarter. Bennett continued driving at will against Northeast, putting them up 18-13; Schulte picked up her third foul right off the bat in the second period and sat on the bench for the rest of the half.

It looked like Northeast would right the ship as Hallie Oelze drove the left wing for a layup at the 5:27 mark to break the run. South Harrison put Williams back in at that point; initially, the move had no effect. Kristin Sherry connected from the right wing and then stole the ensuing inbounds pass and fed Emily Bryant for a layup. Blair Schmitz kicked the ball out to Michelle Schulte on the left wing for a 3-pointer to put Northeast up 22-19 at the 2:47 mark.

But then Pettijohn ignited South Harrison by scoring eight points in a little over a minute, including back to back 3-pointers to start the Bulldog's 30-0 run. With Northeast still up 22-21, Hallie Oelze picked up her third foul, opening up the floodgates for South Harrison, who turned the next eight minutes of the game into a layup drill featuring Williams, who was rebounding on the offensive end at will for South Harrison. Northeast put Jacqueline Schulte and Hallie Oelze back in at the start of the third, but even that did not stop the layup drill as they could not buy a defensive board against the mobile, athletic Williams or contain Whitney Bennett in the open court.

Michelle Schulte finally broke the run by scoring off a Blair Schmitz steal; by then, it was 49-24. Blair Schmitz followed with a 3-pointer and Jacqueline Schulte hit two of her own sandwiched around a Williams free throw, and it looked like the CFX game from last year would repeat itself as Northeast nearly erased a 26-point deficit and whittled it down to five. Jacqueline then answered an off-balance shot by Williams with a pair of free throws, and it was 52-35 at the 5:44 mark, still plenty of time for a team like Northeast. But Northeast missed several shots that would have cut it to 15 or 14, and the layup drill resumed, with Northeast's attempts to come back futilely clanking off the rim and South Harrison's Whitney Bennett pushing the ball down the floor to create easy baskets during an 11-0 run that put the game out of reach at 63-35 at the 2:27 mark. Kristin Sherry led Jessica Redden with a perfect bounce pass for a layup and Taylor Dougan connected from the right side in garbage time for Northeast.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Mullock Hits 15, but Tiger Boys Fall to Panthers

Worth County's boys continued their torturous trek of being able to play close with anyone but unable to get over the top. They hung with Mound City, a team that went to the Elite Eight last year, for two quarters but had a bad third quarter and fell to the Panthers 67-54 in the opening round of the Stanberry Tournament last Monday. Against the Panthers, J.J. Mullock played his best game of the year as he was able to post up at will and score 15 points to take scoring honors for Worth County. He collected the first six points of the game for Worth County to help them stay close in the early going. Then, Zach Harmening hit a floater in the lane and a baseline jumper to tie the game at the 3:01 mark of the first quarter.

Mound City took a 16-10 lead after one quarter as the Tigers went cold and everything they threw up was going in and out. But Todd Harding countered by scoring all eight points in an 8-1 run that put the Tigers back in front at 18-17. Lucas Schwang countered by scoring the next six points on a shot from the right wing, a steal, and a drive to the basket but Zach Harmening got an inside shot off a feed from J.J. Mullock as the Panthers began collapsing on him. Eli Mullock followed with a backdoor layup to bring it back to 23-22. Josh Owens hit a shot from the right side, but Jordan Harding scored off a backdoor layup and Zach Harmening's basket put Worth County back in front at 26-25. Mound City moved back in front at 34-28, but the Tigers had every reason to feel they had momentum after Zach Harmening was fouled on a full-length three-point shot and knocked down two out of his three shots with no time remaining in the half to cut it to 34-30.

But the Tigers had a bad third quarter as bad passes, fumbles, and a general state of panic set in as Mound City had a 15-0 run to make it 51-32 at the 3:30 mark. Gage Rosier had seven during the stretch for Mound City with a pair of steals and a fast break that led to a 3-point play; Schwang added four on a pair of fast breaks as the Tigers were throwing up quick shots that were not going in, leading to easy fast break chances for the opposition. Finally, Bryce Ross hit a baseline jumper to break the run; a drive from Harmening and a layup from Ross off a Jordan Harding steal cut Mound City's lead to 53-38.

The Tigers were able to trade buckets with the Panthers in the fourth quarter, but were unable to get closer than the final score. J.J. Mullock got behind the Panther defense twice for layups and converted one into a 3-point play to have five in the period; Eli Mullock added six on a floater in the lane, a fast break, and a backdoor cut; Todd Harding had a drive and floater; Garrett Hawk rounded out the scoring for Worth County in the period with a 3-pointer from the top of the key. Schwang was able to run at will against the Tigers in the period, getting behind the defense for six points.

Tiger Girls Hit With Injuries, Ousted from Stanberry Tourn

Just as it seemed like Coach April Healy's squad would have something to build on following a strong fourth quarter against fifth-ranked Northeast Nodaway, Worth County's girls were hit with two injuries which set them back. Starters Jessica Garrett and Akaysha Ragan both sprained ankles and were out for the tournament. Consequently, Coach Healy had to go to the bench to try to find someone and begin the process of finding some scoring punch all over again.

Against Jefferson, the Tigers actually put more points on the board than in their previous two meetings combined, but they dropped their third meeting against the third-ranked Eagles 64-18. The Tigers surrendered the ball 36 times against the Jefferson squad. Seeing extended playing time for the first time all year were Rebecca Moore, Carli Jackson, Kacey Smyser, and Victoria Rush as Coach Healy was trying to find someone to step up and fill the void created by the loss of their two starters. The Tigers fell behind 20-2 after one quarter and Jefferson continued to pull away the rest of the game. Ashley Reynolds and Rebecca Moore shared scoring honors for the Tigers, getting four points each.

Mound City was little better as Worth County had even more trouble putting points on the board. Nothing was falling for the Tigers, who fell behind 11-2 after one quarter of play and 30-4 at the half as Mound City routed the Tigers 49-8; it was the third time the Tigers were held to 8 points during the season. The Tigers struggled running their offense as they were getting themselves trapped in the corner and dropping passes as well. They were able to draw contact against the Panthers and get to the free throw line, but they missed a ton of shots from the line. Defensively, the Tigers struggled in transition, giving up some easy layups to Mound City and were getting beat on the boards as well.

Among the few bright spots for the Tigers Wednesday night, Lauren Null and Brooke Gilland each took a charge in the second quarter; Null leads the Tigers in that category for the year. Kacey Smyser showed some aggression and some willingness to attack the basket, getting on the line and sharing scoring honors with Gilland with 3 points. Brooke Gilland provided the lone Tiger field goal in the game, a baseline jumper in the second half. And the best thing that came out of the game was that "we played hard and we didn't quit," said Coach April Healy. And as Tiger guard Lauren Null put it, "We can't quit because we have to finish what we started." The challenge for the winless Tigers is to translate that effort into points on the board. They have only had three games in which they have scored more than 20 points in a game. And the road for Worth County will not get any easier as they will face King City (which beat Mound City in the Stanberry Tournament) and GRC powerhouse Hamilton this week.

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Obituary -- Dr. Victor Noel Bollinger 1921-2009

The Rev. Dr. Victor Noel Bollinger, 88, of Avon Lake, OK passed away Saturday, December 26, 2009 at Fairview Hospital in Cleveland. He grew up in northern Missouri and as a pastor, he lived in Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri, and Ohio, living in Avon Lake the past 3 years.

Rev. Bollinger attended Central Bible Institute and Seminary in Springfield, MO and continued his education at Phillips University in Enid, OK, earning his Bachelor of Arts Degree for Oklahoma Baptist University, Shawnee, OK and Masters and Doctorate degrees from the Toledo Bible College, where he was also a member of the faculty. Being a pastor was a life calling and committment for Rev. Bollinger, serving various congregations, including the Verona Baptist Church of Verona, MO; South West Baptist Church of Wichita, KS; Laura Street Baptist Church of Maryville; and Reynolds Corners Baptist Church of Toledo where he served for 10 years before retiring for the first time. Retirement was not for Rev. Bollinger and he returned to the ministry, serving the Allendale Baptist Church before finally retiring at the age of 80.

Prior to his lifein the ministry, Rev. Bollinger worked as a mechanic, owning and operating a gas station in Grant City. He continued to tinker with things mechanical throughout his life. He also for a time worked on the railroad and developed an enjoyment for anything dealing with trains. He served in the Civilian Conservation Corps during the Great Depression. He loved to read and worked crossword puzzles and was described by his family as "always having his nose in a book." Rev. Bollinger took great pride in the fact that he never smoked nor drank alcohol.

Rev. Bollinger is survived by his wife of 68 years, Fern; daugther Glenda Madden (Rev. Thomas) of Bay Village; six grandchildren, Shannon Lester (Damion), Stephen Madden, Jeremy Zeigel (Penni), Cory O'Riley (Cara), Shea O'Riley, and Sheena O'Riley; seven great-grandchildren: Jake, Damion, Dezmon, Jaylynn, Madysen, Kelsey, and Kinsley; and a sister, Ileta Bollinger of Phoenix.

He was preceded in death by daughter Carol O'Riley, grandson Brendan, brother Albert Bollinger, and his parents.

Funeral services were 11:00 a.m. Saturday, January 2, 2010 at the Laura Street Baptist Church in Maryville. Rev. Paul McKim and Rev. Clyde Hendricks officiated. Interment was in the Kirk Cemetery in Allendale. Arrangements were under the direction of the Prugh-Dunfee Funeral Home in Grant City.

Letter to the Editor

I found your editorial in the December 30th edition of the Sheridan Express percise, timely, and to the point. On the same day I read your article, I received a document from my California kid which was very much in line with your thoughts on "No Child Left Behind." These comments, according to the article, are attributed to Bill Gates in a speech to some high school students.
1. Life is not fair -- get used to it.
2. The world doesn't care about your self-esteem. The world will expect you to accomplish something BEFORE you feel good about yourself.
3. You will NOT make $60,000 a year right out of high school. You won't be a vice-president with a car phone until you earn them both.
4. If you think your teacher is tough, wait until you get a boss.
5. Flipping burgers is not beneath your dignity. Your grandparents had a different word for flipping burgers; they called it opportunity.
6. If you mess up, it's not your parents' fault, so don't whine about your mistakes; learn from them.
7. Before you were born, your parents weren't as boring as they are now. They got that way from paying your bills, cleaning your clothes, and listening to you talk about how cool you are. So before you save the rain forest from the parasites of your parents' generation, try delousing the closet in your own room.
8. Your school may have done away with winners and losers, but life HAS NOT. In some schools, they have abolished failing grades and they give you as MANY TIMES as you need to get the right answer. This doesn't bear the slightest resemblance to anything in real life.
9. Life is not divided into semesters. You don't get summers off and very few employers are interested in helping you find yourself. Do that on your own time.
10. Television is not real life. In real life, people actually have to leave the coffee shops and go to jobs.
11. Be nice to nerds. Chances are you'll end up working for one.

If you can read this, thank a teacher.
If you can read this in English, thank a veteran.

Mickey Floyd
Sheridan West

Margie Comes to Visit

by Mickey Floyd
Sheridan West

December was a good month for visitors. Our daughter and son-in-law from Arizona came out for a visit that was like a NASCAR pit stop. By the time they got their jackets off, it was time to go. But it was great to see them, if only for a short time. Retha and her sister Margie flew into KCI at about the same time, so it was an easy pick-up for me. Having five people in the house at one time was just great. Lots of Christmas sounds. Too much food and the kids leaving too soon. I guess that is pretty much like every one else's Christmas.

The good thing was that Margie was going to stick around and absorb some much-needed Missouri rest and relaxation. She was able to get away from her responsibilities in California for two weeks, and it was her pleasure to have her come here. She has been here several times in the past, but in the summer. Why would I have a relative come here in winter, you ask? This woman is evil. Her mind is like a 12-gauge double barrel shotgun and she keeps both barrels loaded with number four meanshot and aimed at me. Once in California, about 45 years ago, I was introducing her to police as "my wife's sister" when she looked at me with her wide-eyed impish face and said, "Wife's sister? You never told me you were married!" It's a good thing for both of us that I was not carrying a gun at the time. My sergeant was one of those people who just didn't understand a joke. Especially jokes about officers and teenage girls.

That's pretty much the type of relationship Margie and I have had for as long as I've known Retha, and I married Retha despite her. Margie has more nervous energy than a flea at a dog judging contest and twenty years ago, I would have thought that cute. Today, it just annoys me. There are some people that when confronted with a brick wall, will try to climb it to see the other side. Some people who will run to either end to see around it. Some who will even dig a hole to get under it. Margie is the sum of all these people. Myself, on the other hand, I choose to sit in my "Lazy Boy" recliner, drinking tea, while staring at the same brick wall and waiting for my X-ray vision to kick in.

We lost track of Margie once for almost two days (Yea!). Seems she had found my collection of old copies of the Sheridan Express and had locked herself in her bedroom to read. I thought about looking up Jesse and buying every old copy in his office, but I didn't. Instead, Retha and I sent Margie her own subscription in California.

If you enjoyed the Christmas season, thank a veteran.

The opinions expressed here are my own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Sheridan Express or its advertisers.

Allee Won't Run for Reelection

Mayor Bud Allee told the Sheridan City Council Monday that he will not seek reelection for mayor in the April election. He cited health concerns for both him and his wife as well as his other committments. "I leave you with the best water system in the country and $100,000 in the bank," he told the council. "I helped bring two wells to the city, and I'm ready to get out."

Nominated at the annual city caucuses to take Allee's place was councilman Leland Wake, nominated by councilwoman Candy Martin. Water Superintendent Dave Parman nominated Candy Martin to seek reelection as East Alderman. Councilman Dave Thomas nominated Mary Jo Hawk to run for reelection as West Alderman.

The city passed an ordinance changing the way they sign checks; they will no longer require two signatures on checks. The change was brought about by Great Western Bank's policy of imposing a $30 monthly surcharge on all such accounts.

Water Superintendent Dave Parman reported that the water building was not properly insulated, meaning that it had inadequate heating. The council authorized him to get a bigger heater. Parman said that as of the 28th, he will be taking a leave of absence for a few days; Wayne Branham will take over in his absence. There were five delinquent customers reported as well as several customers with extremely high water usage; the city policy is to split the bill in the event of unexpectedly high water usage by a customer, indicating a possible leak or break.

The council voted to hire Gary Hawk to cut down four trees in the park that councilman Leland Wake said were dead and about to fall; two are by the pump station, one is on the north side of the park, and one is on the west side near where the city trucks are parked.

The council passed a resolution saying it was not city policy to do snow removal for alleyways.