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Varsity Bluejays Fall Short Against Trojans

by Annie Johnson


The varsity boys’ basketball team suffered a 38-50 loss against the Hartington Cedar Catholic Trojans during a home game on Friday, January 12.

In the first quarter, the Bluejays and Trojans went neck-and-neck. The Bluejays worked their way around the inside and managed to put up a total of seven points over HCC. However, HCC’s offense found their way to the hoop as well, scoring a total of nine points over the Jays. In the second quarter, momentum picked up for the Jays as the team scored a total of 14 points, including a shot from the free throw line and a three-pointer. Pierce’s defense amped up their game, containing the Trojans’ offense to only four points. The Jays went into the half with an eight point lead 21-13. Coming off the half, the battle to the hoop continued between Hartington and Pierce’s offenses. The Bluejays scored 11 points in the third quarter against HCC, although the Trojans made a comeback, scoring 17 points. Despite the offensive strides from the opposing team, the Jays held their lead with a score of 32-30 at the end of the third. In the fourth quarter, the Jays’ offense struggled to get the ball rolling and scored only six points against Hartington. The Trojans rallied and managed to put up a total of 20 points against Pierce in the final quarter of the game, ending things with score of 38-50.

Individually, Braydan Waldner led the team in points, scoring 25 points, followed by Dalton Freeman with 11 and Gavin Larson with two. Carson Oestreich led in rebounds with three, followed by Waldner with two and Jadon Magdanz and Freeman with one each. Freeman led the team with four steals, followed by C. Oestreich with two. Taylor Oestreich, Carter Rohrich, and Waldner each had one steal. Leading assists was Freeman with a total of four, followed by T. Oestreich with three as well as Wyatt Neitzke and C. Oestreich with one assist each. Waldner had one block against HCC.

“I think we played our best half of basketball this year on the first half,” said head coach Mike Emory. “ We have to have more people step up and score, and we have to do a better job on the defensive boards.”

The varsity Jays will be back in action Saturday, January 20, in Battle Creek.

Bluejays Rise Above Vikings

by Annie Johnson


The varsity Bluejays’ strong offense allowed the team to come home with a 43-35 win over Columbus Lakeview on Tuesday, January 9.

In the first quarter, Taylor Oestreich and Braydan Waldner were the primary scorers. T. Oestreich contributed a total of seven points, including two points from the free throw line and a three-pointer. Waldner put up a total of ten points against Columbus Lakeview. Pierce’s defense managed to hold the home team and end the first quarter in the lead with a score of 17-12.

Waldner continued the momentum in the second quarter by scoring a total of eight points for the Jays, two points being free throws. The Bluejays’ defense contained the Vikings to ten points, allowing the Jays to go into the half with a close lead of 25-22.

Fresh off of halftime, Dalton Freeman found his way to the hoop and gave the varsity team another two points. Right behind Freeman was T. Oestreich hitting a three-point shot, his second of the night. Waldner scored the remainder of the points for the third quarter with five. Lakeview scored only four points against the Jays’ defense in the third.

In the final quarter, Waldner scored the first two points, followed by Carson Oestreich contributing a free throw shot. Waldner scored another two points at the line, as well as T. Oestreich with three points from free throws. The Jays ended the game on top with a final score of 43-35.

Individually, Waldner scored 27 points, and T. Oestreich scored 13. Leading rebounds was Waldner with eight followed by T. Oestreich, Jadon Magdanz, and Freeman each with four, and C. Oestreich with three. C. Oestreich led the team in assists with a total of five followed by Freeman with four and T. Oestreich with three. Freeman was the leader in steals with a total of six followed by Waldner with three. Waldner and T. Oestreich had one block each.

Coach Mike Emory said, “This group has been a pleasure to coach all year. They get along well and try to do what we ask of them everyday.” He also said the game against the Vikings was a “good team win.”

The Bluejays’ next competition will be against the Braves on Saturday, January 20, in Battle Creek.

JV Boys Go Head-to-Head with HCC

By Rose Graham


The JV boys’ basketball team squared off against the Hartington Cedar Catholic Trojans Friday, January 12. The Jays lost a tight game by a score of 46-51.

Starting off in the first quarter for the Jays was David Dale scoring a two-pointer and a free throw. Also scoring for the Jays was Gavin Larson with a three-pointer and two free throws, Weston Neitzke with a two-point shot, and Dawson Watts with a three-pointer to end the first quarter with the Bluejays leading the Trojans 13-11.

In the second quarter, Watts scored another three for the Jays, and Dalton Haase also hit a shot from behind the arc. The Trojans answered back, scoring nine points on the Bluejay defense to take a 19-20 lead heading into the half.

Dale started things off for the Jays in the third quarter with two free throws, and Neitzke made his way to the basket for two points. Watts also added a basket, two free throws, and a three-pointer. With the Trojans scoring 21, the Bluejays were still trailing 30-41 going into the fourth quarter.

Larson started the fourth quarter with five free throws and a three-pointer for the Jays. Neitzke added to the score with a free throw. Kage Heisinger and Watts each put up two more free throws, and Haase hit another two-pointer to end the game. With the Trojans putting up ten more points of their own, the bluejays fell short 46-51 for the final.

“I was happy with the way they competed, but we are still having trouble putting enough together at times to win,” said coach Tim Waldner.  

The JV Bluejays’ next game will be against Battle Creek on the road Saturday, January 20.

JV Bluejays Fall to Lakeview Vikings

by Brenna Collison


The JV Bluejays headed to Columbus on Tuesday, January 9, to battle the Lakeview Vikings. After playing through the fourth quarter, the Bluejays were defeated by the Vikings 42-51.

The Jays were able to put up nine points in the first quarter and held the Vikings to two points. Starting off the first quarter was a three-point shot from Dawson Watts, followed by a two-point shot each from Gavin Larson, Dalton Haase, and Carter Rohrich.

In the second quarter, the Jays’ momentum was slowed as they scored only six points. Larson put in two free throws, Kage Heisinger contributed one free throw, and Haase added a three-point shot. Not able to hold their momentum from the first quarter, the Jays allowed the Vikings to score 16 points during the second quarter. Going into halftime, the Jays were down 15-18.

Coming out of halftime, the Jays were able to score 15 points, and the Vikings 21. Weston Neitzke started off the half with a two-point shot. Adding to that were Watts with two three-point shots and Heisinger with two free throws and a two-point shot. Heading into the fourth quarter, the score was 30-39 with the Jays still trailing.

During the fourth quarter, both the Jays and Vikings scored 12. David Dale put in a two-point shot, Larson contributed a two-point shot and a free throw, Rohrich put in two free throws and a two-point shot, and Haase finished the quarter with a three-pointer. The Jays fell to the Vikings with final score of 42-51.

The JV Bluejays’ next game will be Saturday, January 20, in Battle Creek.

Freshman Jays Go 1-1 In Plainview Triangular

by Kaleb Zamora


The freshman boys basketball team traveled to Plainview to face off in a tournament. They lost their first game to the West Holt Huskies but defeated the Plainview Pirates.

In their first game they faced off against West Holt and lost 29-39. In the first half, both teams were playing well in a tight game, but West Holt’s offense edged out the Jays. Chaden Roth had two points in the first half, Logan Moeller had six, Hunter Raabe had four, David Dale had two, and Dawson Watts had one. At the end of the half, it was West Holt leading Pierce 20-15. In the second half, the offense was doing well, but the defense couldn’t make enough stops. Moeller hit two points, Dale scored six points, and Watts had four points, but West Holt ultimately came out on top 39-29.

In their second game against Plainview, the freshman Jays defeated them 34-22. The first half was low-scoring for both teams, but the Jays were able to keep the lead. Watts had seven points in the first half, Roth nailed two threes, and Raabe had two points to end the half with Pierce leading 15-10. In the second half, everything went the Bluejays’ way with both the offense and defense stepping up. Dale hit two two-pointers and a free throw. Roth hit a free throw, Tyler Race nailed a three-pointer, Moeller hit a three and a two-pointer plus two free throws, Mason Sindelar hit one free throw, and Watts contributed a three. The final score ended up being 34-22 in the freshman Jays’ favor.

The team will be in action again on Monday, January 22, at Norfolk Catholic.

Freshman Teams Face Crofton

by Kaleb Zamora


The freshman girls’ and boys’ basketball teams went to Crofton on Monday, January 8. The Lady Jays fell to the Warriors in a close contest, but the Bluejays won in dominant fashion.

The Jays came ready to play as they defeated the Warriors 42-21. The defense was strong the whole game, as they held Crofton to 11 points in three quarters.

“We played extremely well defensively,” said freshman coach Zach Weber. “Even though our offense wasn’t as good as it has been, we were able to maintain control of the game.”

As for the Lady Jays, they lost a tight game by a score of 26-32.

Both freshman teams will play again on Monday, January 22, against Norfolk Catholic on the road.

JH Boys Basketball Take On Blue Devils

by Annie Johnson


The junior high basketball boys took on the Wayne Blue Devils at Zion Lutheran School on Saturday, January 13. The 7th grade team was victorious, while the 8th grade team took a loss.

The 7th grade team defeated the Blue Devils with a score of 30-28. Scorers for the 7th grade Jays’ game against Wayne were Benjamin Brahmer with 18 points, Abram Scholting with five points, Bode Hoffmann with two points, Dawson Raabe with two points, and Colby Anderson with one point.

The 8th grade boys suffered a 29-41 loss against the Blue Devils. Scorers for the 8th grade game were Kaden Johnson with 12 points, Michael Kruntorad with five points, Ritter Oestreich scored with points, Brahmer with three points, Scholting and Anderson with two points each, and Max Cooper with one point.

The next junior high boys’ games will be Saturday, January 20, at Wayne.

JH Boys Split Games with Boone Central

By Alex McKeown


The Pierce junior high Bluejays Basketball team played the Boone Central Cardinals at home on Tuesday, January 9. They went 1-1 against the Cardinals, as the 7th grade team came away with a 35-26 victory, while the 8th grade team lost 20-44.

In the 7th grade game, the Jays started out strong with an 8-5 first quarter behind four points from each Ben Brahmer and Dawson Raabe. In the second quarter, the Jays increased their offensive production and scored 12 points from two free throws from Abram Scholting, four more points from Brahmer, and a two-point basket coming from each Colby Anderson, Tristan Kuehler, and Raabe. The defense allowed the Cardinals only four points. They went into the half up 20-9. Coming back out onto the court, the Jays slowed down a bit and scored only five, coming from another free throw for Scholting, two more points for Brahmer, and a basket for Trevin Larson. The Cardinals scored three points in the third, and the Jays went into the final quarter of the game up big 25-12. In the final quarter, scoring picked up for both teams as the Jays racked up 10 points to the Cardinals’ 14. Scoring for the Jays came from another two free throws from Scholting, three more baskets for Brahmer, and another two points for Colby Anderson. The Bluejays took the game with their 35-26 victory.

The 8th grade team started out their game with a seven-point quarter coming from a three from Ritter Oestreich, and two apiece from Kaden Johnson and Brahmer. The Cardinals scored 16 points in the first. In the second quarter, scoring for the Jays slowed down as Brahmer put in a two-point basket for the only points of the quarter, while the Jays allowed 13 Cardinal points to go into the half down 9-29. Coming out of the break, the Jays put up four points on baskets from Brahmer and Oestreich but allowed the Cardinals nine more to put the score at 13-38 going into the final quarter. In the fourth, the Jays’ offense picked up as they outscored the Cardinals 7-6, with two baskets for Michael Kruntorad, a basket for Oestreich, and a free throw from Anderson. Still, the deficit proved too much, and the Jays fell 44-20.

Their next game is Thursday, January 18, at Hartington Cedar Catholic.


Pierce Public Schools 201 N. Sunset St. Pierce, NE  68767

402.329.6217 Fax: 402.329.4678

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