NICOLET GIRLS BASKETBALL
There's never going to be anything artful or graceful about what the rebuilding Knights are going to accomplish this season, but effort and back-up will help them out at times, such as in their 44-40 victory over Port Washington in a North Shore Conference game last Friday.
And the effort included that of the parents, who on their own night, supported the struggling team with blue and white painted faces and signs, and a big spaghetti dinner afterward.
Moreover, the victory helped erase the memory of what coach Rick DeKeyser called "laying an egg" against Grafton the week before in a 45-17 loss.
"But now we're moving forward," DeKeyser said. "I like the confidence that we showed here. It's a good thing. From here on out, we're not going to talk about who we're playing, but how we can get better. We've now got a couple of wins under our belt and that should help.
"And the parents really stepped up in showing their support."
The victory improved the Knights to 3-12 overall and 2-7 in the North Shore. They took on Homestead on Tuesday and will host NSC co-leader Whitefish Bay at 5:45 p.m. Friday in the opener of a border rival girls-boys doubleheader.
Nicolet took a 13-8 lead on Port after the first quarter last Friday and were up 21-16 at the half. The gap was closed to 31-28 at the end of three periods. The Pirates fought back and took small leads in the second half, but the Knights fought for the win.
Lizzy Benson hit some big shots and May'an Oren had a big basket, too. Down the stretch, Shatarrei Lennix hit two big free throws and Brookelyn Robertson hit one, too. The Knights did not help themselves with 4 of 13 foul shooting.
But it was enough.
"We talked about holding yourselves accountable, not blaming anyone else if something goes wrong," DeKeyser said. "We made mistakes tonight but our attitude was good."
Brandilyn Robertson scored 11 points and Benson 10 for the Knights as Lennix and Brookelyn Robertson had seven apiece.
WHITEFISH BAY GYMNASTICS
Lily Hayes posted a state best for the year and set a new school record in the all-around with a 38.375 as the Blue Dukes beat Menomonee Falls/Germantown, 141.425-136.775 in a North Shore/Greater Metro Conference dual meet last week.
Hayes turned in an amazing 9.8 on uneven bars, while recording other wins in floor exercise (9.675), vault (personal best 9.475) and balance beam (9.425).
Other good efforts included Aly Yurkowitz with a personal best of 9.15 on bars and Lucy Anzia with an 8.375 on bars. Yurkowitz is still recovering from an ankle strain, while Anzia is being rested because of a nagging pain in her foot.
On the junior varsity level, Slone Waedekin scored an 8.35 on vault and Julia Patek scored an 8.2 in floor exercise. The Blue Dukes host Shorewood at 6:30 p.m. Thursday.
HOMESTEAD-WHITEFISH BAY BOYS SWIM
The Highlanders overpowered the Blue Dukes, 109-74, in a North Shore Conference dual meet on Jan. 30.
The two teams take part in the North Shore Conference meet at Cedarburg, with diving slated for 5 p.m. Thursday and swimming 2 p.m. on Saturday. The Highlanders will be chasing favorite Cedarburg for the title.
Taking firsts for Homestead against Bay were James Guskov in the 50-yard free (24.32 seconds), Whelan Callahan in the 100 butterfly (58.71) and the 100 breaststroke (1:07.05) and Nicholas Gess in the 100 free (53.52). Gess' effort led a one-two-three sweep for Homestead in the event.
In addition, the Highlanders also won the 200 medley relay with Christopher Eckhardt, Callahan, Sylvester Schulties and Guskov (1:48.3) and the 200 free relay with Gess, John Happ, Guskov and Callahan (1:38.89).
For the Blue Dukes, firsts went to Joel Swanson in the 200 free (1:54.97), Joey McMahon in the 200 individual medley (2:07.27), Joe Kaszubowski in diving (328.6 points), Sam Raber in the 500 free (5:15.07) and Noah Oldson in the 100 backstroke (59.46).
Bay won the 400 free relay with Curt Walther, Raber, McMahon, and Oldson (3:37.67).
Homestead won the meet with its depth, earning second in eight of 12 events.
WNS STORM HOCKEY
It's been a long season, but the local co-op finally found a port in the storm, when they held on for a 2-1 victory over North Shore Conference rival Germantown last Friday.
With the win, the Storm improved to 4-15 overall. Zach Asman and Colin Downing each had goals for the locals, while Kyle Asman, Brendan Nagle and John Unsworth all had assists.
WNS took a 1-0 lead in the first period and then the teams exchanged goals in the third session. Both of the Storm's goals came on power plays.
The Storm won the game despite being outshot 35-18 as Robert Ali was stout in goal with 34 saves.
The team took on Sheboygan on Tuesday and will be at Kenosha at 7:15 p.m. Friday.
HOMESTEAD BOYS HOCKEY
The Highlanders remained solid with a pair of non-conference wins last weekend.
They downed Waupun, 6-2, last Friday and then roared past Kenosha, 7-2, last Saturday. With the two victories, they improved to 15-3-1 on the season. They host area rival USM at 7 p.m. Friday and then is at Waukesha at 7:45 p.m. Feb. 11.
Against Kenosha, it was 1-1 at the end of the first period, but then the Highlanders took the lead for good with a three-goal second session. Riley Dixon had a hat trick for Homestead while Ryan Mezera came up with two goals and an assist, Michael Schulz one goal and two assists and Joey Hobbs one goal and one assist. Cole Simpson contributed two assists.
Ethan Levy got the start in goal and made 32 saves.
Against Waupun, the Highlanders were up just 3-2 heading into the third period, but then outscored the Warriors 3-0 in the final session to secure the win. A three for nine effort on the power play helped the cause.
Mezera and Jake Hansen had two goals apiece while Simpson and Schulz had a goal and an assist apiece. Sean Driscoll helped out with two assists. Killian Martin made 33 saves for the win.
HOMESTEAD-WHITEFISH BAY WRESTLING
The Highlanders took advantage of four Blue Duke forfeits and cruised to a 55-18 North Shore Conference victory on Jan. 30.
The two teams, along with Nicolet, will now take part in the North Shore Conference Tournament at 10 a.m. Saturday at Milwaukee Lutheran. Cedarburg will be the favorite.
In the dual, the Highlanders picked up pins from Gage Zupke at 220 pounds (3:51), John Hokeness at 126 (3:44), Tyler Denmark at 145 (3:26) and Conner Scholtus at 152 (5:51). In addition, Drew Waller won by a major decision at 138 (9-0), Nick Pierret claimed a decision at 195 (5-2), and forfeits were claimed by Doug Lennon at 120, Zach Lennon at 160, Pierce Mobley at 170 and Mark Usatinsky at 182.
For the Blue Dukes, Joe Beck at 285 (1:29) and Cooper Fergus at 113 (2:50) earned pins, while Jonah Nelson earned a 5-4 decision at 106 and Miguel Gomez won an 8-5 decision over the Highlanders' talented Zach Price at 132.
SHOREWOOD BOYS SWIM
The Greyhounds finished an unbeaten run through Woodland duals with an entertaining 90-86 win over Greenfield/Greendale.
"After tying Greenfield/Greendale the past two seasons this meet proved to be nearly just as thrilling," said coach Rob McCabe. "We only won two of the 12 events so more than ever we relied on our overall team depth. I wouldn't call it luck either because we didn't have an individual or relay race not score points."
The only two wins the Greyhounds earned were from Kirill Korolev in the 50-yard free (22.5 seconds) and Devon Brusnahan in the 100 backstroke. The Greyhounds took at least eight seconds to outscore the talented PantherHawks.
The Greyhounds will seek to repeat as Woodland Conference champions at the league meet on Saturday at Greenfield.
WHITEFISH BAY GIRLS BASKETBALL
The Blue Dukes maintained an easy grasp of their share of the North Shore Conference lead with a 62-14 rout of Milwaukee Lutheran last Friday.
Bay is now 8-1 in North Shore play, same as co-leader Germantown, which beat rival Cedarburg last Friday. The Blue Dukes are 13-2 overall.
They play at area rival Nicolet at 5:45 p.m. in the opener of a girls-boys doubleheader on Friday, then will host Cedarburg on Friday, Feb. 14 in a game that will likely determine if they earn at least a share of the NSC title.
It was 18-8 after the first quarter and 33-12 at halftime against Lutheran. Bay shut out the Red Knights 14-0 in the third quarter.
Ashley Reed led eight different scorers with 18 points as Maya Jonas had 14 and Emma Jankowski 13.
SHOREWOOD BOYS BASKETBALL
The Greyhounds remained hot with a 65-54 Woodland Conference win over New Berlin West last Friday and then with a 65-51 non-conference victory over Big Foot on Monday.
With the two victories, the Greyhounds improved to 10-6 overall and 7-5 in Woodland play, good for second behind Eastern Division leader Brown Deer (11-3 in the league).
In the victory over West, the Greyhounds trailed 19-14 after the first quarter, but then outscored the host Vikings 20-12 in the second period to take a 34-31 halftime advantage. Shorewood led 46-41 after three quarters before the Greyhounds were able to stretch out the advantage in the fourth.
As it has been all season, balance was the key for the Greyhounds. Te'Jon Lucas and Kenneth Odom had 13 points apiece, Shane Carrington and Kevin Taylor 12 apiece and Kejuan Glosson 11.
Shorewood hit 15 of 19 free throws and drained six 3-pointers as Taylor and Glosson had three 3-pointers apiece. Lucas hit all five of his free throws.
The Greyhounds have now won three in a row and eight of their last 10. They are in the midst of a hectic schedule as they will be at Greenfield on Thursday and St. Francis on Friday before visiting Brown Deer in the Falcons' new fieldhouse on Tuesday, Feb. 11.
All games are at 7:30 p.m.
NICOLET GIRLS GYMNASTICS
The Knights came up just a bit short in falling to Grafton 129.475-129.0 in a North Shore/Greater Metro Conference dual meet last week.
Top efforts for the Knights included Rachel Rabenn taking second on vault (8.5), while thirds went to Ellen Liang on uneven bars (8.375), floor exercise (8.525) and all-around (33.8) and to Hayley Raj on balance beam (8.675).
Taking firsts on the junior varsity level were Sidney Capati on vault and floor, Raj on bars and Lauryn Wagner on beam.
"The greatest part of the night was watching Alexandra Marcus get her first 8 of the year," said coach Chris Dempsey. "Also, seeing a team compete as a family group and loving what they do while having fun and laughing. It's the greatest gift of this job to watch the girls smile and achieve long awaited goals."
NICOLET BOYS SWIM
The Knights turned in a competitive effort against North Shore Conference favorite Cedarburg last week, falling by a 102-84 score.
Winning events were Jeremy Moser, Michael Mills and Dylan Hall.
The NSC meet will be held at Cedarburg over the next few days. Diving will be held at 5 p.m. Thursday and swimming at 2 p.m. Saturday.
"We're in real good shape going into the meet," coach Dwight Davis said. "We're still really young, but we have a number of depth guys who are really improving and that's very encouraging. Our morale and energy is very good right now."
Zach Lennon picked up a title at 160 pounds as the Highlanders earned fifth of 11 teams at the Wisconsin Dells Invitational last Saturday.
The Highlanders scored 123 points as Waunakee won with 154.
Lennon improved to 32-3 on the year with victories over Omro (pin 4:38) and Belleville (pin 5:30) opponents in claiming his crown.
Taking seconds were Zach Price at 132 (2-1, 26-9) and Drew Waller at 138 (2-1, 21-7); fourths went to Tyler Denmark at 145 (2-2, 20-16) and Mark Usatinsky at 170 (3-1, 11-15) and fifths were taken by Doug Lennon at 120 (18-17) and Gage Zupke at 195 (2-2, 22-12).
— Steven L. Tietz
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