No. 6 Gael girls topple Cowgirls

The St. Edmond girls basketball team lived up to its sixth-ranked (Class 2A) billing here Friday night.

Staying unbeaten on the young season, the Gaels (2-0 overall, 2-0 in the North Central Conference) pounded Clarion-Goldfield by a 71-34 final in their 2013-14 home opener.

Juniors Jaci Stumpf and Anna Yung each netted 15 points for SEHS, which shot 52.6 percent (30-for-57) from the field.

“I thought we came out and played a pretty solid game all the way around,” said St. Edmond head coach Scott Messerly. “We want to be about nine deep, which is where we were (Friday). Getting that production off the bench is always pretty valuable, especially in tight games.”

Senior Alli Huss (12) and freshman Megan Flattery (10) both scored in double figures as well for the Gaels. Huss also grabbed a game-high 13 rebounds, while Flattery pulled down seven boards. As a team, SEHS held a decisive 33-18 edge on the glass.

“We had to sit Huss after she picked up her second foul in the second quarter, but we never really missed a beat,” Messerly said. “I thought the difference besides our scoring was (junior) Clare Flattery and Megan Flattery, who both gave us a huge spark off the bench.”

Jossie Sann, a senior, anchored the Cowgirls (2-1, 2-1) with 12 points. Junior Jennalee Hinkle was next in line with eight. Clarion-Goldfield, which committed 28 turnovers, was held to just 12 field goals.

St. Edmond surged out to a 22-7 advantage after the first eight minutes, while extending their lead to 43-16 at the break.

“We figured we might have to press some, but we didn’t really need to,” Messerly said. “I thought our tempo bothered (the Cowgirls) a little bit.”

Dating back to the 2008-09 campaign, St. Edmond has now prevailed over Clarion-Goldfield 10 straight times.

In a battle of defending co-NCC champions, the Gaels will host Hampton-Dumont (3-0, 2-0) Tuesday. The Bulldogs topped Algona last night, 51-41.