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February 27, 2020

1/16/2020 4:15:00 PM
North Branch breaks losing streak at four with two blowout wins

Princeton 84, North Branch 61
The Vikings’ losing streak hit four games on Tuesday, January 7 when they fell to Mississippi 8 opponent Princeton by 23 points.

“It was an extremely physical game and at times got a bit out of control,” Head Coach Alison Trampe said after the contest. “We let them dictate the tempo and style of play.”

The Tigers enjoyed a 10 point cushion at halftime despite the strong play of Paige Peaslee and Megan Bunes, and they only expanded on that lead in the second half with Madison James and Lauren Bjurman dominating for Princeton.

Peaslee had a big game, scoring 24 points and grabbing 15 rebounds, but the true monster game of the night went to James. She scored 36 points and had six rebounds, six assists, three steals and two blocks.

Bjurman had 22 points for Princeton while Bunes chipped in 16 points for the Vikings.

“Despite the loss, there were stretches of the game where we played much better than against Grand Rapids so we will take that as a positive and keep working to get back on track,” Trampe said.

North Branch 66, St. Francis 49
North Branch 64, Duluth Denfeld 29
The Vikings finally busted out of their slump with back-to-back dominating wins over St. Francis and Duluth Denfeld on Friday, January 10 and Saturday, January 11.

“We got back to what we were doing well earlier in the season,” Trampe said. “I was very proud of the girls for responding in a positive way after some tough losses.”

Kate Carlson had her best game of the year for NB when they took on St. Francis, scoring 22 points, grabbing eight boards and adding four assists and four steals. Peaslee added 20 points, six rebounds and two blocks.

Katelyn McAbee also came off the bench when NB got in some foul trouble, and she scored seven points and have four rebounds in 10 minutes of play, which was key in keeping St. Francis from getting close. Ella Kuhlman had seven points and five steals in a relentless defensive effort.

Against Denfeld, the game was over not long after it started. The Hunters were 2-8 on the year and have a very tough time scoring the basket, and it was evident against NB.

Even with a slow offensive start by the Lady Vikes, Denfeld couldn’t capitalize. And then the floodgates opened with three straight three pointers by Maddie Helin.

“That got us going and  we built a lead going into halftime,” Trampe said. “It was a great team win for us with many girls contributing.”

Peaslee and Bunes combined to outscore the Hunters on their own, but Helin and Carlson each posted double figures and it was a laugher pretty quick, with NB leading by 24 at halftime and the lead only growing even with back ups in.

Bunes had 16 points, five rebounds and five steals. Peaslee had 15 points and five boards. Carlson had 13 points, nine rebounds, six assists and three steals, and Helin had 11 points and five steals.

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