Gering’s Kelsey Bohnsack steps up in win against Newcastle

Gering's Kelsey Bohnsack plays tight defense on a Newcastle, Wyoming, player during their game on Saturday, Jan. 11 in Gering.

Gering’s Kelsey Bohnsack has been coming up big for the girls basketball team all season as a role player.

It takes more than just players scoring to win a basketball game. It takes players that are willing to go the extra mile hustling for loose balls and hitting the floor to be a successful team.

The Gering girls basketball team is filled with plenty of role players that give it their all on the court. Bohnsack has been consistently one of those player, including Saturday, Jan. 11 in Gering’s 56-44 win over Newcastle, Wyoming.

Bohnsack had just two points in the contest, but it was the little things she did that stood out such as hitting the floor for loose balls and fighting for rebounds all game long.

The reason Gering won was because Bohnsack said they wanted it, something they didn’t do the night before in a loss to Sidney.

“I think (against Newcastle) we played as a team and everybody had their strong points,” Bohnsack said. “We worked the ball around and used everybody’s best skills and let them go to work with what they are good at.”

Bohnsack really stepped up to the plate in the win where she had some key hustling plays where she dived for balls and forced jump balls with her intensity. It is those little things that make or break a team whether they will be winners or losers.

Bohnsack said doing those intangibles is crucial in a game.

“It is very important,” she said after the Newcastle win. “Diving on the ground or making a hard foul all sets the presence that shows how much you want it and how much you will work for it. It shows the other team how much more you want it more than them.”

A couple instances of Bohnsack’s hustling was a play late in the first quarter where Bohnsack hit the ground to get a steal or recovery of a loose ball. Bohnsack had enough knowledge to avoid the traveling call and dished the ball off to another player who made a pass to Cloey Fries for a bucket at the buzzer and an 18-15 lead after one.

Bohnsack’s intensity in doing those little things caught head coach Steve Land’s attention.

“I think Kelsey Bohnsack did a good job of coming off the bench, battling for loose balls on the floor,” Land said after the game. “We just brought a lot more energy today and that is what I am most proud of.”

Bohnsack, along with the other players, now know how those intangibles of diving for balls and forcing jump balls are important to winning or losing.

“The intangibles are extremely important,” she said. “Sometimes it takes one diving for a ball and tying someone up and getting a jump ball to make a gamechanging play and getting something positive that could make you either win or lose the game,” she said. “I know lots of conversations between Coach Land and I where he said ‘you will be in the game if you are hustling and working hard for it.’ That is something he likes to see in his Bulldogs. That is what we were out there doing (Saturday), out there hustling and fighting our rear ends off.”

That was the big difference between Saturday’s win over Newcastle and Friday’s loss to Sidney, the will to win.

Saturday’s win was extremely important for the Lady Bulldogs as it snapped a 9-losing streak and improved the team to 3-11 on the season. Gering will be back in action Friday when they travel to Gordon-Rushville before they will take on Chadron on Jan. 24 at home and then travel to Scottsbluff on Saturday for the rivalry game on the 25th.

“I think this win was important because we had so many losses that sometimes it is mentally hard to get back in the game,” Bohnsack said. “I do think that, as Bulldogs, that we persevere and will overcome some adversity. I think the game against Sidney was a bit rough. We didn’t have as much want and will to win as we did tonight.”

When Gering hits the hardwood on Friday, they will also be doing it after a good week of practice, something they didn’t have last week because of a jayvee tourney in Scottsbluff and a home wrestling dual. That week of practices should do wonders for the team, according to Bohnsack.

“We have not had much practice (last) week because our jayvee played in the Scottsbluff tournament and we had a wrestling dual so we had like 30 minute practice on Thursday,” she said. “It will nice to get in the gym and get our skills back up.”

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