Tigers' girls' basketball season cut short
Morris Area/Chokio-Alberta finished the 2009-2010 girls' basketball season third in the nine-team West Central Conference South at 11-5 and earned the No. 4 seed in Section 6AA West.
Overall, the Tigers' posted a 15-9 record. Of the season's losses, five were in overtime or by three points or less.
However, the Tigers' season ended in the first round of the sub-section tournament with a loss to Long Prairie-Grey Eagle.
It was the final game in black and orange for four seniors, Nicole Gillespie, Kelsey Greenwaldt, Jenna Nelson, and Mary Rentz.
"Their leadership, dedication, and joy for the game will be missed," said coach Ken Gagner. "It was an honor to be thier coach."
Gillespie led the Tigers in rebounding, averaging 6.65 per game. She also put up 10.35 points per game.
"Nicole is an unselfish player," Gagner commented. "I never heard her complain."
Greenwaldt averaged five rebounds per game along with 4.79 points.
"Kelsey was a truly pleasant surprise this season," he said. "She really worked on her game and improved."
Nelson led the team in assists per game with 4.65 and steals per game with 2.91. She also averaged 11 points and four rebounds.
"Jenna was really a spark plug for the team," Gagner said.
Rentz was the Tigers' leading scorer, averaging 13.67 per game. She also had 3.04 assists per game.
"Mary is an outstanding player," said Gagner. "She is gifted athletically and is a team builder."
This season, several Tigers made the record books kept since the pairing between Morris Area and Chokio-Alberta started in the fall of 1994.
Rentz finishes her career ranked sixth in points scored with 610 and 10th in three-pointers with 27. She also holds the eighth spot in single-season points scored with 328 in 2009-2010.
Gillespie is ranked ninth in career points with 529 and sixth in career rebounds with 318. She is tied for eighth place with 153 single-season rebounds in 2009-2010.
Nelson made three career lists. She is 13th with 499 career points, eighth in steals recorded with 124, and fourth with 54 three-point field goals. She also holds four single-season records. She is 10th in steals recorded with 67 this season, fourth in assists with 112 in 2008-09, fifth with 107 assists in 2009-10, and made 30 three-pointers this year to rank sixth in a single-season. She broke her own single-game assist record by recording 10 versus Paynesville this season.
Junior Erin Schieler is 10th on the single-season blocks recorded list with 20.
With nine juniors on this season's team, the Tigers' arsenal will be ready for 2010-2011. They include captains Sarah Kuhn and Shadow Olson, along with Erin Schieler, Hannah Sayles, Erica Domnick, Elizabeth Helberg, Kelsey Loew, Natalie Johnston, and Rory Anderson. Coach Ken Gagner challenged those returning players to come back "stronger, quicker, and improved in at least one skill area."