Fourth-rated Newell-Fonda faces CDHS

—Messenger photo by Britt Kudla Newell-Fonda’s Olivia Larsen drives to the basket in the Mustangs quarterfinal game against Lansing Kee.

DES MOINES — Perennial state contender Newell-Fonda had little trouble in their Class 1A girls basketball quarterfinal here on Thursday.

The fourth-ranked Mustangs (25-0 overall) defeated ninth-ranked Kee, 61-45, advancing to the semifinal round for the fifth time in the last six years.

Now, Newell-Fonda will face second-ranked and fellow unbeaten Central Decatur (25-0) for a shot at their seventh state finals appearance in program history. Under head coach Dick Jungers, the Mustangs have made the title round four times. Newell-Fonda won it all in 2015.

Semifinal action is set for 3:15 p.m. inside Wells Fargo Arena.

The Mustangs, who are competing at state for the 13th time overall, are led by Olivia Larsen. The junior had 28 points in the opening round on 12-for-19 shooting.

Emma Stewart contributed 11 points and three three-pointers. Megan Morenz grabbed 10 rebounds.

Central Decatur defeated Montezuma, 52-48, in the quarterfinals. Alli Masters had 25 points on 8-for-20 shooting. She was 6 of 8 from the line and hit three triples.

Emma Atwood added 14 points and eight rebounds.

Larsen entered the tournament averaging 19.5 points per game for N-F. She now has 1,082 career points.

Stewart is averaging 7.6 points, and Jenna Coppock is scoring at a 6.1-point clip.

Atwood and Masters are Decatur’s main threats, averaging around 20 points per contest each. Atwood is scoring 21.1 per night, and Masters is averaging 19.1.

Atwood is second in scoring for 1A and Masters is eighth, while Larson is sixth for the Mustangs.

COMMENTS