Sierra Hill looks for an open teammate despite a Wahlert double team.

Western Dubuque’s girls’ basketball team itself in a hole too deep to dig out of — falling behind 15-1 in the first six minutes — and lost a 46-37 decision to Wahlert, in Epworth, Dec. 20.

After the Golden Eagles led, 17-3, to close the opening quarter, the Bobcats found some life and trailed by only seven, 22-15, with two minutes remaining in the half. A closing 5-2 run by Wahlert sent the teams to the break at 27-17.

“We got in a deficit we couldn’t recover from in the first quarter,” said Western Dubuque coach Amy Ostwinkle.

Wahlert maintained its 10-point advantage to the four-minute mark of the third before an 8-0 Western Dubuque run narrowed the gap to two, 31-29. That’s as close as the Bobcats would get, and the Golden Eagles led, 36-29, heading to the fourth quarter.

After Wahlert led by eight, 41-33, with five minutes remaining, the Western Dubuque defense held the Golden Eagles scoreless for over three minutes, and it was a 41-37 game with two minutes remaining.

Wahlert came through at crunch time, outscoring the Bobcats, 5-0, the rest of the way, to pick up the win and improve to 2-5 on the year. Western Dubuque, coming off its first MVC win of the year against Iowa City Liberty, Dec. 17, fell to 3-5 heading to the holiday break

Wahlert was led offensively by Allie Kutsch with 12 points and Mary Kate King with 10, while Jenna Fiedler had 14 and Emma Gile 12 for Western Dubuque. The Golden Eagles won the rebounding battle, 28-23, and hurt the Bobcats with 15 offensive rebounds.

Ostwinkle is optimistic about her team’s potential, with a nice stretch of practices ahead, saying, ”We need to continue working over the break on playing four complete quarters.”

Western Dubuque statistics against Wahlert: scoring — Fiedler 14, Gile 12, Maddie Harris and Sierra Hill three, Ashley Costello and Abigail Kluesner two, Maddy Maahs one; rebounds — Kluesner eight, Gile five, Fiedler three, Costello, Hill and Maahs two, Leah Digmann one; assists — Costello one; steals — Fiedler two, Hill and Costello one; blocks — Fiedler, Gile and Hill one.