Friday Feb. 1
Buffalo started strong for a change with a 12-2 early run and it paid off as the Bison notched their 2nd straight victory by routing North St. Paul by a final score of 68-29.
We may have to check the Bison record books as (3) Bison players recorded "double-doubles" - Nicole Duske (16 & 15) - Emily Spier (12 & 11) and Anika Fredrick (10 & 10).
The Bison led 6-0 at North St. Paul head coach Andy Jacobson had to take an early time out to try and stop the Buffalo momentum. After the time out Carolyn Feddema and Spier made 3-pointers to extend the lead to 12-2. Jerika Decker kept the Bison scoring moving in the right direction by scoring 5 point in a row as Buffalo led 21-8 at the 4:36 mark and pushed the halftime lead to 30-10 a few minutes later.
The Polars came out after half and seemed to be more focused as they had outscored Buffalo 8-5 opening up the 2nd half, but with Tiah Marr still out with her injured foot, Nicole Duske stepped up in the and her energy and rebound put-backs were key to the Bison extending their lead as Duske seemed to be everywhere on the court this snowy Friday evening. Fredrick had (2) FT’s and another basket as Buffalo extended its lead to 41-18 with 12 minutes to play. On the Bison’s next possession, Duske went hard to the rim and was fouled as she made the basket leading to a made FT that concluded the 3-point play giving her 13 points for the game with 10 minutes to play.
Coach Scot Sorenson inserted little used Payton Speckel at the 7:40 mark as Speckel was coming off back-to-back strong JV performances and I think the coach was looking to reward her good play. The Bison led 56-26 at this point and the Buffalo players were looking to get Speckel her first Varsity points, but on this night it wasn’t meant to be as Speckel went scoreless and was still searching for that first varsity point.
The Bison had five players in double figures as they were led by a career high 16 points from Duske. Followed by Feddema with (13) – Spier (12) – Decker and Fredrick both notched (10). Duske led the team with a game high 15 rebounds follwoed by Spier (11) and Fredrick grabbed (10).
Next Game: Tuesday Feb 5 @ Monticello
Thursday Jan. 31
Something had to give Thursday night in Big Lake. Both Buffalo and Big Lake came into this conference game struggling with identical 0-4 conference records. Buffalo was coming off the heartbreaking buzzer-beater loss to Rogers and was hoping to build on their momentum of playing well in their last game and the young team again gave a solid effort in beating the Hornets 70-62.
Coach Sorenson knew that this game would be tough from the start as he dressed only 10 players instead of his usual 12 as junior center Tiah Marr injured her foot in the weight room earlier in the week and was in a walking boot. Fellow junior Cami Daniels decided to quit the team to concentrate on other activities that she is involved with at BHS.
Both teams came out strong and trade baskets early and Big Lake took their first lead of the game when senior guard Mady Peterson sank a 3-pointer for a 9-8 lead. Buffalo answered back with back-to back baskets by Emily Spier and a driving lay-up by Chelsey Henson to go up by five. Every time that the Bison would open up a small lead of 4 or 5 points the Hornets would answer back with a basket. Spier had the hot hand for the Bison scoring most of her points in the paint as Buffalo opened up its biggest lead of the game at 30-23 with 2:22 to play in the half. True to form, Big Lake scored on its next 2 possessions and trailed at half 31-27.
Point guard Chloe Boster started the 2nd half out strong with a drive to the basket and a dish for an assist to Anika Fredrick for the easy deuce. Boster was very active all night with her drives and Big Lake had a hard time stopping her. At the 13:40 mark senior Brigette Audette hit a 3-pointer that gave Big Lake their first lead since they led 9-8 mark as the Hornets went up by 2 at 37-35. Carolyn Feddema’s (2) FT’s put the Bison back in front with 11:41 to play, but 41 seconds later Spier headed to the bench after picking up her 3rd foul with Buffalo holding on to the one point lead.
Buffalo pushed the lead back up to five points at 49-44, but another 3-pointer by Audette cut the lead back to two points on the next possession. Big Lake tied the game the next time down the court, but this time Buffalo answered with a strong driving lay-up by Boster. The Bison were able to stretch their lead to 58-54 after a Lauren Schultz rebound put-back at the 4:49 mark. Big Lake once again cut the lead in half with a quick basket and Coach Nate Chapman called a timeout to give his players a rest.
Coach Sorenson drew up a play in the huddle that worked to perfection as Fredrick set a hard high screen at the top of the key and Feddema went strong to the hoop for an uncontested left-handed lay-up. Both teams added a pair of FT’s (Fredrick & Audette) that had Buffalo leading 63-59 with 2:32 to play. Buffalo was able to increase the lead to 7 after a Schultz bucket off the inbounds play, Audette drained another (3) to keep the game close (66-62) with under a minute to play.
Buffalo was able to ice the game on its next two possessions as Feddema and Boster both sank FT’s for the 70-62 final. Spier led Buffalo with a game high 24 points and 12 rebounds and Boster scored a career high 10 with her aggressive play. The Bison balanced attack also had two players with 8 points and three plays with 6 points apiece. Big Lake was led by Audette’s 21 points and Emily Gruber’s 16.
Next Game: Friday Feb. 1 @ North St. Paul
“I’ve always believed that if you put in the work, the results will come. I don’t do things half-heartedly. Because I know if I do, then I can expect half-hearted results.” Michael Jordan
Once a "BISON" always a "Bison"
Emily Spier signed her National Letter of Intent to play college basketball at North Dakota State University (NDSU) on Wednesday November 14th at Buffalo High School amongst teammates, coaches, friends and family.
Emily has been part of the Buffalo Bison team since her freshman year and has played on a State Tournament team and last years team that lost to Saint Michael Albertville in the Section Finals.
Spier, an all-conference and honorable mention all-state performer, averaged 14.1 points and 6.1 rebounds as a junior for Buffalo High School said head coach Scot Sorenson.
“Emily is one of those young people that has figured out how to blend effort in with her natural gifts and abilities,” said Sorenson.
“Her hard work, strength, and intelligence have allowed her to excel academically as well as athletically in various sports throughout high school. The focus she placed on hoops has helped expand her game to new heights.”
A multi-sport athlete, Spier has led the Bison in volleyball, softball, basketball, and track and field. Emily holds a number of school records in volleyball, and is No. 3 all-time in block assists and No. 4 in total blocks for a single-season. She has also broken into the record books for a 39-feet, 2 3/4-inches shot put.
“NDSU felt like home. I loved the school and the coaches and it wouldn’t feel right if I couldn’t say, ‘once a Bison always a Bison’,” Spier said of her decision to attend NDSU.
Emily is the daughter of Ron and Lisa Spier.
Excerpts from this article courtesy of www.gobison.com
Separate yourself - Find ways you can differentiate yourself from all of the players trying out for the team. Find positive ways to stick out."
1. Be the most vocal and enthusiastic player in the gym. Be an energy giver.
2. Hustle! Be the first player in line for each drill. Try to win each sprint. Do everything at game speed!
3. Make the extra pass. Be selfless while everyone else is selfish.
4. Box out every single play of every single drill.
5. Make eye contact with the coach when they're speaking.
6. Dive for the loose balls and take charges. Every team needs a player that does those two things.
7. Be a good teammate. Keep in mind that 'WE' is greater than 'ME!'
8. Arrive early and stay after to get in extra work. Learn the difference between "waiting and preparing."
9. Know your strengths and weaknesses. If you aren't a competent 3-point shooter, then don't shoot 3's. Find ways to highlight what YOU do well.
10. Communicate with the coach. If you aren't sure, ask the coach what things you need to do to EARN a spot on the team. The key word is EARN.
11. Play present. If you make a mistake, move on and focus on the next play. Concentrate on the two things you control at all times, your EFFORT and yourATTITUDE.