Spartan girls bomb Rockets, enter break at 8-0

 ELK HORN (Dec. 22) -- The Exira-Elk Horn-Kimballton girls reached the holiday break with a perfect 8-0 record last Tuesday night, building a 32-11 second-quarter lead and taking care of Ar-We-Va 79-42.
 Senior Tatum Grubbs led the seventh-ranked (1A) Spartans with 26 points and younger sister Quinn Grubbs scored 18 as Exira-EHK improved to 6-0 in the Rolling Valley Conference.
 “It’s a good way to go into break,” said E-EHK head coach Tom Petersen. “They’re tired. It’s been a stressful year on everybody, but that’s part of it.
 “I thought Tatum Grubbs really played a lot better tonight. She really wanted the ball, demanded the ball and did a lot of positive things when she had it.”
 The Grubbs sisters set the tone right away by combining for 17 first-quarter points, including three 3-pointers, as Exira-EHK grabbed a 24-9 advantage.
 The Spartans showcased excellent ball movement vs. the Rockets’ early 2-3 zone and knocked down open shots. They also forced their fair share of turnovers using a full court press and took three defensive charges in the first half.
 After the Rockets switched to man-to-man defense in the second quarter, Exira-EHK missed a lot of short-range shots in the lane but crashed the offensive boards hard and converted at least four second and third-chance buckets.
 The Spartans finished the first half on an 8-2 run to lead 40-18 at the half, then continued to pull away in the final 16 minutes. Tatum Grubbs scored 13 points in an outstanding third period.
 Quinn Grubbs, who scored eight fourth-quarter points, has added a soft mid-range jumper to her arsenal as a sophomore.
 “It’s something that we have really really worked on this year as far as not going too far with the over-penetration,” Petersen said. "It’s a good shot. It’s a high-percentage shot."
 Rasmussen finished with 16 points for the Spartans and Macy Emgarten was the fourth player in double digits with 10.

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