Nevis girls showed improvement, finished 11-17

Led by a group of underclassmen, the Nevis girls basketball team was able to win a playoff game and end the season with an 11-17 overall record.

     Led by a group of underclassmen, the Nevis girls basketball team was able to win a playoff game and end the season with an 11-17 overall record.

     Nevis opened the season by splitting Northwoods Conference games with a loss to Kelliher/Northome (61-48), wins over Blackduck (48-34) and Cass Lake (64-49), and a loss to Clearbrook-Gonvick (65-47).

     After a loss to Staples-Motley (59-34) and a win over Bertha-Hewitt (58-36), the Tigers split games at the Walker-Hackensack-Akeley tournament with a loss to Red Lake Falls (60-35) and a win over W-H-A (66-59).

     The Tigers lost to Verndale (59-36), Pine River-Backus (65-30) and W-H-A (52-27) before putting together a three-game winning streak by defeating Cass Lake (55-44), Laporte (74-34) and Kelliher (67-55) in conference play.

     A three-game losing streak followed as the Tigers fell to Swanville (41-36), Pillager (57-49) and Park Rapids (63-48). Nevis followed a win over Laporte (72-40) with a loss to W-H-A (58-47) and a win over Northland (75-65).


     The Tigers suffered losses to Menahga (55-47), Clearbrook-Gonvick (56-44), Blackduck (45-42) and Pine River-Backus (64-34) before closing the regular season with a win over Parkers Prairie (45-44) and a loss to Sebeka (58-44).

     The Tigers finished fifth in the conference standings with a 6-8 record to trail Pine River-Backus (14-0), Clearbrook-Gonvick (11-3), W-H-A (10-4) and Blackduck (8-6). Kelliher (5-9), Cass Lake (2-12) and Laporte (0-14) rounded out the conference standings.

     Nevis received the No. 8 seed in the north for the Section 5A playoffs and opened with a 73-71 win over No. 9 Northland before falling to No. 1 Browerville 84-59.

     “I thought the season went fairly well. Every coach will tell you they’d like an extra win here or there, but at the end of the season I was happy with how we progressed and continued to improve,” said Nevis head coach Mike Lien. “I felt like we were playing some of our best ball in the last five games.”

     Leading the Tigers this season were seniors Ruby Vedbraaten and Lindsay Bennett; juniors Hannah Bliss, Becca Nelson and Jordyn Lucas; sophomores Madisyn Lucas and Emma Bliss; and eighth grader Elennor Roehl.

     Hannah Bliss was named the Tigers’ Most Valuable Player and earned Northwoods Conference First Team honors after leading the team by averaging 16.1 points and 10.7 rebounds a game. In 28 games, Bliss scored 450 points, grabbed 300 rebounds and had 42 steals, 29 blocked shots and 23 assists.

     Jordyn Lucas was a Northwoods Conference Second Team selection after leading the team with 79 steals and 77 assists while averaging 9.0 points a game. Lucas scored 251 points and had 71 rebounds in 28 games. Lucas received the team’s Hustle Award and Playmaker Award.

     Nelson also played in all 28 games and averaged 8.0 points a game, leading the team by making 29 3-pointers to earn all-conference honorable mention honors and the team’s Downtown Specialist Award. Nelson scored 224 points and had 84 rebounds, 38 steals and 30 assists.


     Emma Bliss averaged 6.4 points and 9.2 rebounds a game. In 28 games, Bliss scored 178 points, pulled down 257 rebounds and had 15 steals and 14 assists. Bliss received the Coaches Award.

     Madisyn Lucas also played in all 28 games and had 125 points, 84 rebounds, 44 steals and 34 assists to earn the team’s Most Improved Player honor.

     Roehl made an impact in her first varsity season by averaging 4.0 points and 3.2 rebounds a game. In 23 games, Roehl had 91 points, 74 rebounds, 15 steals and 11 assists. Roehl was named the Tigers’ Rookie of the Year.

     Bennett had 13 points in seven games and earned the team’s Best Teammate Award while Vedbraaten had 24 points, 24 rebounds, 21 steals and 10 assists in 13 games.

     Also seeing some varsity time were juniors Katya Arhendt (five games) and Alexis Poncelet (25 points in 14 games); sophomore Sierra Monroe (six games); and freshmen Tori Carrier (six games) and Montana Baker (five games).

     “We have high expectations going into next year. We return our top players and look to add more depth to the varsity roster,” said Lien. “In talking with the girls, we feel like a top-three finish in the conference and a top-five finish in the section are what we’ll be shooting for. Our section will be really tough again next year, so we’ll have to get in the gym and work hard this summer to improve.”

1982 Dawson-Boyd High School graduate
1987 Moorhead State University graduate
Sports reporter for Park Rapids Enterprise since 1987
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