Monarchs cruise to opening night win over Kearney

Papio notches its first win of the season in 67-30 rout of the visiting Bearcats.


Izzy FonfaraDrewel

Junior guard Jenna Hoelcher dribbles the ball against Kearney Thursday night. Hoelscher had five points and seven rebounds in the Monarchs win.

Anthony Rubek, Staff Writer

Every team’s goal is to start a season with a win after a long offseason of training. An opening night win could help set the tone for a successful season. Papio did just that in dominant fashion on Thursday night.  

The Monarchs defeated the Kearney Bearcats 67-30 to win their first game of the season. Senior forward Lindsey Ingwerson led all scorers with 15 points. 

Papio was lock down on defense, holding the Bearcats to shooting just 6 of 25 from the field. They also forced 18 turnovers in which they scored 17 points off them. 

“Our defense came together and started working as a team,” sophomore guard Olivia Kraft said. 

The Monarchs passing game was strong as they gathered 17 assists to Kearney’s two. Ingwerson and sophomore guard Brooklyn Wrice led all Monarchs with four assists each. 

“Our teamwork helped us pass the ball around,” Kraft said. “We just came together.” 

The game started out with a deep three from senior guard Olivia Boudreau. Both teams then slowed down a bit and the Monarchs were leading 9-3 at the end of the first quarter. 

“We started out kind of rough with them,” Ingwerson said.  

Papio then went on a 5-0 run to take a 14-3 lead, but many players started getting in foul trouble, sending Kearney to the line for most of the quarter. After a buzzer beating layup by the Bearcats, the Monarchs led 24-10 going into halftime. 

After Kearney cut the Papio lead to 13, the Monarchs broke out on a 19-4 run to end the third quarter led by Ingwerson and Boudreau. 

“We talked to each other about getting stops on defense and pushed the ball on offense,” Ingwerson said. “We were playing together as a team.” 

Papio continued to carry momentum outscoring the Bearcats 22-13 in the final quarter. They dominated by a score of 67-30 in a game where all varsity players saw playing time. 

The Monarchs look to continue their momentum next Friday when they take on Omaha North at home. 

“We’re going to continue to work together as a team and have fun,” Ingwerson said.