HUXLEY - After a slow start Ballard used a disruptive defense to spark its offense in a 47-34 victory over Nevada Saturday.


The Bombers, ranked sixth in Class 4A, were coming off a big 48-38 win over a North Polk team ranked first in 3A last night. They came out looking a little emotionally drained against Nevada, scoring just four points in the first quarter.


The Bombers fell behind 5-0 early, but Meg Rietz ended Ballard’s scoring drought and Bomber point guard Molly Ihle, the team’s defensive catalyst, scored back-to-back baskets to spark a 17-0 run.


“When we get stops on defense it makes the offense flow better,” Ihle said. “It all comes together when we get stops. Transition (baskets), it just flows.”


Nevada continued to hang a round going into halftime. Two Addi Vorm 3-pointers pulled the Cubs within 17-13 at the break.


But in the third quarter Ihle followed up a Brooke Loewe basket with a 3-pointer and a putback for seven quick Ballard points. Nevada continued to fight hard in the third quarter, but Josie Fleischmann hit three of her four 3-pointers to help Ballard go up 11 heading into the fourth.


“I had some good passes from my teammates,” Fleischmann said. “Everybody works together and then you get an open shot.”


Ballard eventually pushed its lead to 15 points on a Rietz 3-pointer late in the fourth quarter to sew up the win. Rietz came up big for the second game in a row, scoring seven points and adding four rebounds and steals apiece after netting eight points in the win over North Polk.


“Maggie (Larson) and I really gel together moving in and out,” Rietz said. “Everyone has that inside-outside threat.”


Fleischmann ended up 4 of 7 from 3-point range and she had 14 points and two assists on the night. Ihle produced 11 points, seven steals, six rebounds and three assists.


Loewe scored seven points and tacked on seven rebounds, five assists and three steals. Larson added four points and three rebounds, Cassidy Thompson two points and blocks apiece and Rachel Wohlgemuth two points in helping the Bombers improve to 8-1.


Nevada fell to 5-5.


Vorm led Nevada with nine points and three rebounds. Elie Tuhn and Kacie Rewerts added five points apiece and Tuhn added four rebounds and three assists and Rewerts six boards and two blocks.


Sydney Mosinski and Alexandria Arnaud each chipped in four points and they combined for seven rebounds and four assists for the Cubs.


Ballard 47, Nevada 34


N 5 8 13 8 - 34


B 4 13 20 10 - 47


Nevada (34) - Sydney Mosinski 1-2 2-5 4, Addi Vorm 3-8 0-0 9, Elie Tuhn 1-4 2-2 5, Meredith Harter 0-0 2-2 2, Amelea Jones 0-0 0-0 0, Megan Wessels 0-0 0-0 0, Shelbi Hazlitt 1-2 0-2 3, Aubrey Gibson 0-0 0-2 0, Kacie Rewerts 2-4 1-4 5, Mayzi Weig 0-0 0-0 0, Maddie Dunham 1-1 0-2 2, Alexandria Arnaud 2-5 0-1 4. Totals: 11-26 7-20 34. 3-point field goals (5): Vorm 3, Tuhn, Hazlitt. Rebounds (24): Rewerts 6. Assists (8): Tuhn 3. Steals (3): Mosinski, Vorm, Harter. Blocks (3): Rewerts 2. Fouls: 11.


Ballard (47) - Brooke Loewe 3-11 0-0 7, Maggie Larson 2-9 0-0 4, Cassidy Thompson 1-4 0-0 2, Josie Fleischmann 5-10 0-0 14, Kylie Rigby 0-0 0-0 0, Rachel Wohlgemuth 1-1 0-0 2, Sydney Briggs 0-0 0-0 0, Meg Rietz 2-6 2-3 7, Ashley Wuestenberg 0-0 0-0 0, Molly Ihle 4-13 2-2 11, Lily Hillebrand 0-2 0-0 0, Paityn Noe 0-0 0-0 0. Totals: 18-56 4-5 47. 3-point field goals (7): Fleischmann 4, Loewe, Rietz, Ihle. Rebounds (28): Loewe 7. Assists (12): Loewe 5. Steals (16): Ihle 7. Blocks (3): Thompson 2. Fouls: 14.


HUXLEY - Ballard dominated down the stretch to upset North Polk, 48-38, in a battle of highly-ranked non-conference rivals Friday.


The Bombers, ranked sixth in Class 4A, held a Comet team rated first in 3A to just four points over the final eight minutes. Ballard used a productive second quarter to take a 27-25 lead at the half and maintained that two-point edge going into the fourth quarter.


Then the defense took over allowing the Bombers to pull away and avenge last season’s overtime loss to the Comets. The victory put Ballard at 7-1 and North Polk fell to 6-3.


Ballard held North Polk to 24-percent shooting from the field. The Bombers made eight more field goals than the Comets.


The Bombers also forced 14 turnovers and only committed seven. That helped them overcome a 37-34 rebounding deficit.


Molly Ihle turned in another great all-around game for Ballard. She had 13 points, nine rebounds, four assists, one steal and one block and helped hold North Polk all-state star Maggie Phipps to five points.


Brooke Loewe, Josie Fleischmann and Meg Rietz each scored eight points for Ballard. Loewe also had four rebounds, three steals and two assists, Fleischmann three rebounds and Rietz five boards.


Maggie Larson chipped in four points, Lily Hillebrand three, Cassidy Thompson two points, five rebounds and three blocks and Rachel Wohlgemuth two points and three boards.


Phipps added eight rebounds and two blocks to her scoring total for North Polk. Jaedon Murphy put up a game-high 14 points to go along with eight rebounds and one block, Lucy Schaffer scored seven points and Hannah Foster hit two 3-pointers to finish with six points for the Comets.


Ballard 48, North Polk 38


NP 16 9 9 4 - 38


B 14 13 9 12 - 48


North Polk (38) - Makayla Boatman 1-6 1-2 4, Lucy Schaffer 1-9 4-5 7, Abi Zimmer 1-4 0-0 2, Sydney Anderson 0-0 0-0 0, Jaedon Murphy 4-10 4-6 14, Hannah Foster 2-3 0-0 6, Maggie Phipps 1-8 3-6 5, Abby Hill 0-2 0-0 0. Totals: 10-42 12-19 38. 3-point field goals (6): Murphy 2, Foster 2, Boatman, Schaffer. Rebounds (37): Murphy 8, Phipps 8. Assists (8): Zimmer 3. Steals (5): Phipps 2. Blocks (6): Phipps 2. Fouls: 13.


Ballard (48) - Brooke Loewe 3-10 0-1 8, Maggie Larson 2-8 0-0 4, Cassidy Thompson 1-5 0-0 2, Josie Fleischmann 3-7 1-2 8, Rachel Wohlgemuth 1-1 0-0 2, Meg Rietz 2-5 3-4 8, Ashley Wuestenberg 0-0 0-0 0, Molly Ihle 5-11 3-4 13, Lily Hillebrand 1-1 0-0 3. Totals: 18-48 7-11 48. 3-point field goals (5): Loewe 2, Fleischmann, Rietz, Hillebrand. Rebounds (34): Ihle 9. Assists (9): Ihle 4. Steals (7): Loewe 3. Blocks (4): Thompson 3. Fouls: 16.