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Chickasaws out-muscle Huskies in opener

HUSKIES BASKETBALL: NEW HAMPTON 58, NASHUA-PLAINFIELD 41

Chickasaws out-muscle Huskies in opener

Hansen, Fisher lead N-P’s offense against New Hampton

NEW HAMPTON — It wouldn’t be basketball season without a fresh coat of snow on the ground. And that’s what Chickasaw and Husky fans had to welcome them in New Hampton on Monday night for the season opener for the girls’ basketball season. In the 58-41 loss to New Hampton, head coach Erik Smith learned a lot about his team in just the one game.

Junior Sierra Fisher shined again for the Huskies, putting up a team-high 13 points in Monday night’s loss. She had three assists and four steals to compliment her line for the evening.

Sophomore Sydney Hansen was right behind Fisher, shooting 5-for-7 from the floor — including 2-for-2 from 3-point land — for a total of 12 points. With the season hinging on defense, Smith said Hansen and Fisher could definitely evolve into key offensive players.

“When Sydney gets going, she presents that matchup problem,” Smith said. “She can be the height and ability to score the ball from anywhere on the floor.

“Sierra is aggressive and she’s able to attack and get to the free throw line quite a bit. Those two girls have the ability to put points on the board.” With the Huskies putting up 41 points on Class 3A New Hampton, Smith said there were a lot of baskets that the Huskies left out on the floor. Nashua-Plainfield only shot 12-for-26 from the free throw line.

Missed opportunities equipped with a high turnover ratio led to a 34-14 deficit at halftime.

New Hampton entered the bonus toward the middle of the third quarter, but the Huskies couldn’t quite capitalize at the charity stripe.

“We were playing defense like we wanted to, but we put too much pressure on ourselves with the turnovers,” Smith said. “We had 21 turnovers in the first half and with the defense we want to play, we can’t play that much defense in a half.”

The Huskies’ defense was sound throughout the night, even while handing over 58 points to the Chickasaws. Players like Fisher, Hansen, Aubrey Bienemann and Briley Fisher forced the Chickasaws hands early in possessions. But a lack of defensive rebounding gave New Hampton a handful of second-chance points.

A 7-2 run at the start of the second half helped the Huskies climb out of the 20-point hole. And although they found themselves down as much as 24 points, a couple of crucial three’s brought the Huskies within reach.

This season has centered around defense, but mental preparation before and during the game as well.

“We just need to focus on what our defensive positioning is,” Smith said. “Offensively, we just need to slow ourselves down and refocus on what it is.”

By Stephen Koenigsfeld [email protected]

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