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Nemaha Central Girls Win Final Big 7 League Title Outright, Thunder Boys Dominate
By Jared Sleppy
Copyright: MSC Sports
02/20/2024

The Nemaha Central girls basketball team won the final Big 7 League title outright as they defeated Riverside at home 56-37. The boys team also got a dominant 62-29 win to give them a ten-win season in league play for the third time in the past four years.

Cami Dalinghaus scored 12 points in the first quarter for Nemaha Central, but Taylor Weishaar kept Riverside in the game with seven points of her own. The Thunder finished the quarter with an 8-0 run to take a 20-12 lead.

The run ballooned to a 13-2 advantage and an 11-point lead. Riverside wasn’t able to make a field goal in the first four minutes of the second quarter. They would make just two total before the half, and Nemaha Central made five threes. Emma Hermesch made two and Dalinghaus made two more to give Nemaha Central a 38-23 lead at halftime. Dalinghaus scored 18 first-half points, and Weishaar had 16, including going 8-for-8 from the free throw line. The Thunder made eight three-pointers in the first half as well.

Offense was not as abundant for either team in the third quarter, but Nemaha Central extended their lead to a game-high 16 points as they headed into the fourth quarter up 46-30.

At the beginning of the fourth quarter, Weishaar surpassed the 1,500 career-point mark. Nemaha Central kept the pedal to the metal, though, and didn’t allow Riverside to get back in the game. The Thunder clinched the outright Big 7 League title for a seventh consecutive year and the final time with the league merging with the Mid-East League next athletic season. They finish the regular season 14-0 in Big 7 League play, and 18-2 on the season. As for Riverside, they finish 12-2 in league play and 18-2 overall.

Dalinghaus led Nemaha Central with 18 points, all of which came in the first half, making her the Player of the Game brought to you by Farmers State Bank. Hermesch and Hallie Holthaus each made three threes and scored nine points. For Riverside, Weishaar led the Cyclones with a game-high 20 points.

In the boys game, Riverside started with a 7-1 run, only for Nemaha Central to respond with a 17-2 run of their own. They would have an 18-9 lead after the first eight minutes of the game thanks to 11 first-quarter points from Abe Hilbert.

It would grow to a 24-4 run before the Cyclones would string together some baskets to make the game more competitive. Hilbert scored a pair of baskets late in the quarter to lead all scorers with 15 points going into the halftime break with the Thunder having a 33-20 lead.

Carter Rottinghaus put the game away halfway through the third period as he scored 10 points in the first four minutes of the quarter. This was part of a quarter where the Thunder outscored the Cyclones 23-1.

In the fourth quarter, the Thunder got their second team in, and Carter Kramer scored five points for the Thunder on senior night with the crowd erupting each time he scored.

Nemaha Central has now gotten 10+ wins in Big 7 League play in three of the last four years. They finish the regular season with a 14-6 overall record and a 10-4 record in league play. As for Riverside, they fall to 3-11 in league play and 5-15 overall.

Hilbert didn’t score in the second half, but he led all scorers and is our Player of the Game by Farmers State Bank. Rottinghaus finished with 12 points as well. A combination of 11 different Thunder players finished with at least one point.


©2024 MSC Sports
Hiawatha, KS 66434
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