Atlantic Basketball Crushes Clarinda

Both Trojan squads beat Clarinda for the second time this season.


Lauren Nicholas

Senior Logan Reilly reaches toward the ball after tip-off against the Cardinals earlier in the season. Against Clarinda, Reilly had two rebounds and two steals.

Hana Holtz, Editor

After playing Creston at home the night prior, the Atlantic basketball teams took on Clarinda in another double-header, this time at the Atlantic Middle School. The two varsity teams topped Clarinda the last time played, and were looking to do so again.

The Clarinda Cardinals arrived in Atlantic with only one win to their name–a narrow victory over Lenox in their first contest of the season. In the two teams’ last meeting, the Trojan girls were victorious on the road, 63-53.

Sophomore Haley Rasmussen, juniors Kenzie Waters and Corri Pelzer, and seniors Baylee Newell and Heidi Williams started for the Trojans. In Tuesday night’s matchup, Atlantic’s defense limited the Cardinals to single-digit scoring in three of the four quarters. At halftime, the Trojans led 34-19.

The Trojans kept with their quality defense throughout the second half. Clarinda was able to outscore Atlantic in the fourth quarter, but only by two points. For the second time this season–and the tenth straight time–the Atlantic girls collected the win against the Cardinals, 52-31. Twenty-one points is the largest margin the team has won by all season.

The Trojans played superb defense all night–slating a season-high 26 steals. Rasmussen had eight of these. On offense, Rasmussen led the Trojans with 17 points. Two other Trojans were in double-figures–senior Alyssa Ginther had 12 off the bench, and Waters put in ten. The girls also had nine assists.

On the boys’ side of the double-header, Atlantic faced off against a team they beat 62-49 just a few weeks prior. Since then, the Cardinal boys added three more losses to their losing record, while the Trojan boys added two wins and one loss.

Sophomore Skyler Handlos, junior Tyler Moen, and seniors Jalen Petersen, Chase Mullenix, and Logan Reilly made up the Trojan’s starting lineup. Clarinda quickly proved this wasn’t going to be as easy as last time, as they outscored the Trojans in the first quarter. However, Atlantic bounced back and put up 26 points in the second quarter to place them back in the lead. At the end of the first half, Atlantic was in front 36-27.

A last-ditch effort by Clarinda in the fourth quarter kept the Trojans on their toes. The Cardinals played a solid offense, but couldn’t come any closer to gaining the lead back from the Trojans. Atlantic won their third straight game, 51-42.

Mullenix led the Trojan boys with 17 points–nine of which came from behind the arc. Petersen also hit three three-pointers, and added two more points from the field. Moen rounded out the double-digit scorers with 12. As a team, the boys grabbed 33 rebounds.

This was the last double-header of the 2018-19 season. The boys have a few more regular-season games left–all of them occurring in Trojan territory. The girls will travel to Shenandoah on Saturday for the Regional Quarterfinal matchup.