Pewamo-Westphalia at Fowler – – CMAC Girls Game of the Week – – Girls Basketball – – The Bleacher Denizen – – December 7, 2022 – – by Chuck Krafft

Tonight is the first night for the “CMAC Girls Game of the Week”; I have come to Fowler to watch as the Eagle Girls host the Pirates from Pewamo-Westphalia (hereafter to be referred to as “P-W” to save wear and tear on your aging Bleacher Denizen’s aging typing fingers.)

It has been a busy day for your Bleacher Denizen as he entertained seniors at the Hazel Findlay Home in St. Johns with his Christmas show and then hit Ryan’s Roadhouse for dinner before making the drive to Fowler.

Here is one of the songs I performed for the seniors. It’s an original cynical Christmas Parody of a cynical Christmas Parody. While we wait for the game to start, perhaps we can listen to it!

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vp3FW5dhL3E

Now we KNOW the rest of the story in regard to Grandma’s tragic encounter with the reindeer!!

I was at the gym to watch the JV game. Fowler took a 23-12 lead at halftime, but P-W outscored Fowler 10-4 in the third quarter to close the Fowler lead down to 27-22. Fowler got it going in the fourth quarter and ended up winning by the score of 46-27.

Elyse Thelen let the Pirate JVs with 6 points. Emerie Smith added 5 points. Leah Miller scored 4 points. Taylor Nurenberg and Maddy Weber each added 3 points; Lilly Anderson, Brenna Thelen and Ally Nurenberg each contributed 2 points.

Elizabeth Hufnagel led the victorious Fowler JVs with 22 points. Paige Thelen, Megan Hufnagel and Josie Simon each had 4 points. Madelyn Sillman and Paisley Hansen each scored 3 points. Selena Stump, Kelcie Pung and Neelah O’Rourke each tallied 2 points.

Pewamo-Westphalia has won its only game so far this season. P-W Coach Steve Eklund provided me with this information about his Pirate players.

Sierra Schneider is a tall and intimating defensive presence in the post. She is a fine inside scorer and rebounder as well. Mackenna Weber is a determined perimeter defender. Brynn Bauer is a fine ball handler and defender who plays the point guard position. Logan Drake is a fine post defender who blocks a lot of shots. Elly Bengel has a fine three point shot.

Kambrie Thelen is a versatile defender who can cover opponents in the post or on the perimeter. On offense, she is a fine passer with a strong basketball IQ. Kierstyn Griesmer and Alonna Thelen are threats from the three point line. Brooke Spitzley and Aylah Smith contributed quite a bit to last year’s team, but both are injured and cannot play tonight.

Most CMAC fans know the result of the last time I covered a Fowler girls basketball game. Fowler is the returning state champion from 2021 and 2022!

https://thebleacherdenizen.com/2022/03/19/fowler-vs-plymouth-christian-academy-mhsaa-division-4-girls-basketball-final-the-bleacher-denizen-march-19-2022-by-chuck-krafft/

This year’s Fowler team is working through some injuries and has a 1-1 record so far. Emma Riley, an All-State Guard and Carly Andros, who also started and played a huge role on the championship teams are both out for tonight’s game. Carly Andros will probably miss the entire basketball season. We hope these ladies both heal soon and are able to get back to their athletic pursuits.

Avery Koenigsknecht, a returning starter from last year’s team has a fine three point shot and is very energetic in her perimeter defense. Grace Epkey was also a starter last year and had a huge role in the previous championship. The team needs her toughness and great rebounding inside, but she is also a fine defender anywhere on the court. On offense, her toughness gets her a lot of putbacks and other inside scores, but she is also a threat to shoot from the perimeter. Taylor Weber was a rotation player last year as well. She is a fine three point shooter and like every one on Fowler’s team, a determined and committed defender.

Emma Riley would probably be tonight’s point guard if she could play, but Katie Spicer will handle that role instead. She is a fine three point shooter and strong ball handler. I have to imagine that after Emma Riley comes back, Fowler will enjoy incredible depth at the guard position. Quinn Watts brings a huge amount of energy and aggression to the Eagle defense.

Grace O’Hare is a three point threat off the bench. Rebecca Smith, Brianne Halfmann and Brooke Weber give Fowler three more energetic defenders to throw at opponents.

It is now time to review the events of this game from the occasionally clear prism of an Aging Bleacher Denizen who was never able to escape church league when he attempted to play basketball in ancient times. Many people pointed out that he lacked good rotation on his three point shot, but in my defense, few of the boulders we used for basketball in those days could be spun very well.

P-W wins the opening tap. Avery Koenigsknecht knocks the ball away from P-W, but the Pirates recover. P-W misses a driving layup. Fowler throws a pass out of bounds. Mackenna Weber passes to Sierra Schneider, who pivots and hits a layup to give P-W the first two points of the game.

Fowler misfires on a threeball from the top of the key. Grace Epkey pulls down the offensive rebound for the Eagles. Fowler misses a layup. Grace Epkey steals the ball for the Eagles. Elly Bengel and Brynn Bauer hit the floor to tie up the ball. The Possession Arrow is getting through some early-season rust and misses the play; the ball is awarded back to Fowler. Katie Spicer drives and hits a reverse layup for Fowler to tie the game at 2-2.

Avery Koenigsknecht steals the ball and hits a fast break layup to give the Eagles a two point lead. P-W is whistled for a traveling violation. Mackenna Weber blocks a Fowler shot, but the Eagles recover the loose ball. Sierra Schneider steals an Eagle pass. Grace Epkey returns the favor and steals a Pirate pass. Elly Bengel tips the ball away from Fowler and causes a tieup. The Possession Arrow yawns, stretches and awards the ball to P-W. Grace Epkey steals the ball for Fowler.

Alonna Thelen knocks the ball away to prevent a Fowler layup. The ball goes out of bounds and the Eagles get another possession. Fowler misfires on a three point attempt from the side. P-W misses a layup. Fowler misses a five foot hook/layup. Grace Epkey blocks a P-W shot and manages to catch the ball in the process. Fowler misses a layup. The rebound goes out of bounds and P-W takes possession.

Taylor Weber knocks the ball off P-W and out of bounds; Fowler takes possession. Fowler misses a droving layup. The Bleacher Denizen misses seeing the ball go into the basket. Katie Spicer ties the ball up; the Possession Arrow decides to give the ball to Fowler. Fowler misses a droving hook shot. Brooke Weber steals the ball for Fowler. Rebecca Smith hits a layup to give Fowler a 6-2 lead.

P-W misses a three point shot from the wing. Fowler fouls on the offensive end. P-W misses a layup. Fowler misses a fifteen foot shot from the wing. P-W misses a layup. Fowler misses a threeball from the side. P-W misses a driving layup. Sierra Schneider pulls down the offensive rebound for the Pirates. P-W misses a layup. Mackenna Weber rebounds the ball for P-W. P-W is fouled on a layup and misses two free throws at the buzzer.

After one quarter, Fowler holds a 6-2 lead.

P-W inbounds the ball to start the second quarter. The Pirates miss a three point shot from the side. Brynn Bauer chases down the long offensive rebound and drives in for a Pirate layup. Grace Epkey drives and dishes the ball to Quinn Watts, who hits a layup for Fowler. Grace Epkey knocks the ball away from the Pirates and Taylor Weber picks it up for the Eagles. Grace O’Hare is fouled on a fast break layup and hits one of her two free throws to give Fowler a 9-4 lead with 6:37 to play in the second quarter.

Taylor Weber nearly steals the ball for Fowler, but P-W recovers. Brynn Bauer drives and hits a layup for the Pirates. Brianne Halfmann hits a layup for the Eagles. Sierra Schneider hits a layup for P-W. Elly Bengel steals the ball and hits a fast break layup for P-W. Kelcie Pung passes to Rebecca Smith, who hits a layup for Fowler to boost the Eagles to a 13-10 lead.

(After both teams shot dreadfully in the first quarter, it’s refreshing to see all the good shots!)

P-W loses a pass out of bounds. Fowler misses a three point shot from the wing. P-W misses a three pointer from the top of the key. (Did I speak too soon?) Sierra Schneider pays no attention to the Bleacher Denizen’s whining as she hits a putback, is fouled and makes her free throw to tie the game at 13-13 with 4:43 to play in the second quarter.

Elly Bengel steals the ball and hits a fast break layup to give P-W the lead. Mackenna Weber steals the ball for P-W. The Pirates are whistled for an offensive foul. Katie Spicer drives and hits an interesting driving sort of hook shot that she has developed for Fowler to tie the game. (I hope I’m not giving too much away, but she hit at least two more of these in the second half, so I guess this is a unique weapon in her personal basketball arsenal!) Elly Bengel is not as impressed as I was as she swishes a long shot from the corner to give P-W a 17-15 lead.

At first, it looked like a three pointer, but I guess the refs are closer and have younger eyes than your aging Bleacher Denizen.)

Fowler misses a three point shot from the side. Grace Epkey for the second time this game blocks a P-W shot and catches the ball all in one motion. (This is an incredible skill; this is the second time this game she has done it. Instead of a loose ball that can be recovered by the opposition and converted to a layup in the chaos, she totally secures a possession for her team. I have blogged hundreds of basketball games and rarely see shot blockers who are able to do this.) This time, it’s ruled to be a held ball and the Possession Arrow gives the ball to P-W. (You’re still my hero, Grace! That was quite a play!)

P-W misses a fifteen foot shot from the side. Fowler gets out on a too fast break and throws the ball away. Grace Epkey steals the ball for Fowler and the Possession Arrow decides not to interfere. Logan Drake ties up the ball for P-W. This time, the Possession Arrow is distracted by a spilled pot of tea and awards the ball to Fowler. Fowler misses a fifteen foot shot from the side. Brynn Bauer stops the recent series of offensive struggles as she drives and hits a layup to give her Pirates a 19-15 lead.

Fowler is fouled on a shot and misses two free throws with 2:09 to play in the half. P-W misses a fifteen foot shot from the side. It is now Sierra Schneider’s turn to block a Fowler shot and catch the ball all in one motion. (Nice!!!) A P-W dribbler steps out of bounds with 3.1 seconds to play in the half. Fowler misses a half court heave at the buzzer.

Pewamo-Westphalia has a 19-15 lead at halftime.

Rebecca Smith and Katie Spicer lead the Fowler scoring with 4 points each.

Sierra Schneider has 7 points for P-W. Brynn Bauer and Elly Bengal each have 6 points.

Your Bleacher Denizen wishes to let you know that Pewamo-Westphalia continues to lead after halftime at the start of the third quarter. The score is still 19-15, too.

The Pirates inbound the ball to get the third quarter underway. They miss a three point attempt from the corner and foul on the rebound. Fowler misses a layup, but Grace Epkey hits a putback for the Eagles. P-W misses a fifteen foot shot from the wing. Grace Epkey hits a fast break layup for Fowler to tie the game at 19-19.

P-W misses a fifteen footer from the side; the rebound goes out of bounds and Fowler gets the ball. Fowler misses a driving layup. Quinn Watts is fouled on a putback and hits one of her two free throws to give Fowler a 20-19 lead with 6:04 remaining in the third quarter.

P-W misses a three point shot from the wing. Fowler misses a driving layup. Katie Spicer taps the offensive rebound to Avery Koenigsknecht, who secures possession for Fowler. Fowler misses a three point shot from the top of the key and fouls on the rebound. Grace Epkey gets a hand on P-W’s inbound pass and creates a Pirate turnover. Fowler misses a hook/layup. The rebound goes out of bounds and Fowler gets another opportunity. Fowler misses a shot, but Grace Epkey pulls down the offensive rebound and hits a short hook shot to give her Eagles a 22-19 lead.

P-W loses the ball out of bounds. Fowler misfires on a triple try from the corner. Grace Epkey pulls down the offensive rebound for the Eagles. Fowler misses a layup, but gets the offensive rebound. (Your Bleacher Denizen’s eyes were not fast enough to pick out the Eagle who got that rebound; my apologies!) Katie Spicer ignores the Bleacher Denizen’s embarrassment as she launches and hits a three pointer from the corner that gives Fowler a 25-19 lead.

P-W misses a driving layup. Avery Koenigsknecht passes Brianne Halfmann, who is fouled on a layup. Brianne Halfmann hits one of her two free throws to push the Eagles to a 26-19 lead with 3:42 left in the third quarter.

Grace O’Hare knocks the ball away from P-W and Quinn Watts picks it up for Fowler. Fowler loses the ball out of bounds. Kierstyn Griesmer gets a cross court pass to Elly Bengel, who throws in a threeball from the corner for the Pirates. Fowler loses the ball out of bounds. Elly Bengel hits an eighteen footer from the top of the key for P-W to cut the Fowler lead to 26-24.

Mackenna Weber steals the ball for the Pirates. P-W misses a twelve foot shot in the lane. Taylor Weber passes to Avery Koenigsknecht, who is fouled on a ten footer in the lane and hits one of her two free throws to give Fowler a 27-24 lead with 1:44 to go in the third quarter.

Kierstyn Griesmer passes to Sierra Schneider, who pivots and hits a ten foot shot in the lane. Avery Koenigsknecht responds for Fowler with a long three pointer past the top of the key; the shot was at least twenty-five feet!! Fowler leads 30-26.

P-W misses a three point shot from the wing. Mackenna Weber gets the offensive rebound for the Pirates. Rebecca Smith battles and ties up the ball; the Possession Arrow agrees that her defense was exceptional and awards the ball to Fowler. Fowler misses a fifteen foot shot from the side. Elly Bengel throws up a half court heave that hits the backboard and the front of the rim (on the inside) before finally falling to the ground as the third quarter ends.

Fowler enters the fourth quarter with a 30-26 lead.

P-W has the ball to start the fourth quarter. The Pirates miss a layup. Sierra Schneider steals the ball for P-W. P-W misses a layup. The Weber connection for Fowler comes through as Taylor Weber passes to Brooke Weber, who throws in a three point shot from the side to give her Eagles a 33-26 lead.

P-W misses a jump shot from the free throw elbow. Fowler misses a three point shot from the corner. Mackenna Weber is fouled on a fast break eight foot shot from the side. She hits one of her two free throws to trim the Fowler lead to 33-27 with 6:28 remaining.

Elly Bengel gets her hand on the ball for P-W and causes a tie up. The Possession Arrow has been watching Tik Tok videos and missed the play; the ball is awarded back to Fowler. Logan Drake steals the ball for P-W. Kierstyn Griesmer hits a long three point shot from the side to cut the Fowler lead in half. Fowler leads 36-33.

Fowler misses a threeball from the side. P-W misses a driving eight foot shot in the lane. Fowler throws a pass through the lane and out of bounds. Fowler’s aggressive defense on the inbound pass forces P-W to call a timeout to avoid a five second violation. Katie Spicer goes to the floor to steal the ball for Fowler. Fowler misses a three point shot from the wing. P-W misses a three point shot from the corner. Sierra Schneider is fouled on a putback and hits one of her two free throws to chop the Fowler lead to 33-31 with 3:58 left in the game.

Katie Spicer spins and drives in for a Fowler layup. P-W misses a driving layup; Sierra Schneider hits a putback to bring the Pirates back to within two points. Katie Spicer drives and hits a banked hook shot for Fowler as she falls down. P-W misses a three point shot from the side. Katie Spicer drives and hits one of her patented hook shots from six feet along the baseline to give Fowler a 39-33 lead.

Mackenna Weber drives and hits a layup for P-W. Taylor Weber is fouled on a driving runner and hits one of her two free throws for Fowler. Grace Epkey steals the ball for the Eagles. Avery Koenigsknecht is fouled on a putback and hits one of her two free throws to give Fowler a 41-35 lead with 1:25 left on the clock.

P-W misses a layup. Brynn Bauer pulls down the offensive rebound for the Pirates. P-W misses a layup. Brynn Bauer gets another offensive rebound. P-W misfires on a three point shot from the corner. Brynn Bauer hits a putback to cut the Fowler lead to 41-37 with 47.3 seconds to play.

Mackenna Weber and Elly Bengel double team Fowler and take the ball away. P-W misses a layup. Mackenna Weber ties up the rebound and the Possession Arrow gives the ball to Pewamo-Westphalia. Mackenna Weber gets the ball to Sierra Schneider in the lane, but Fowler fouls her before she can shoot. As this is only the sixth foul of the half for the Eagles, P-W inbounds the ball instead of shooting free throws. Grace O’Hare steals the ball for Fowler and races to the other basket for an Eagle layup. Fowler leads 43-37.

P-W misses a three point shot from the wing. The rebound goes out of bounds and the Pirates get another opportunity. P-W loses its inbound pass out of bounds. Elly Bengel hustles and knocks the Fowler inbound pass out of bounds; Fowler retains possession. Katie Spicer is fouled and hits one of two shots in a one and one opportunity. P-W only has 4.1 seconds and misses a half court shot at the buzzer.

Fowler wins 44-37.

Sierra Schneider led the Pewamo-Westphalia scoring with 12 points. Elly Bengel joined her teammate in double figures with 11 points. Brynn Bauer added 8 points. Mackenna Weber and Kierstyn Griesmer each scored 3 points.

Katie Spicer led the victorious Fowler team with 14 points. Grace Epkey scored 7 points and Avery Koenigsknecht added 6. Rebecca Smith had 4 points. Quinn Watts, Brianne Halfmann, Brooke Weber and Grace O’Hare each contributed 3 points. Taylor Weber tallied 1 point.

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