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FEBRUARY 14, 2019 (GRAND ISLAND, NEB.)  — Troopers with the Nebraska State Patrol (NSP) have arrested several people and seized 100 pounds of marijuana during five traffic stops this week on Interstate 80. All five stops happened between Tuesday afternoon and Wednesday morning.

At approximately 1:55 p.m. MT Tuesday, trooper located more than two pounds of marijuana after stopping an eastbound Toyota Yaris for speeding at mile marker 18 near Kimball. The driver, Jessica Reyna, 25, of Sacramento, California, and passenger, Chase Sinclair, 29, of Charlotte, North Carolina, were both arrested and lodged in Kimball County Jail.

Troopers then found 85 pounds of marijuana during a traffic stop at approximately 3:45 p.m. CT Tuesday. A trooper had stopped a Chevrolet Tahoe parked in a no-parking area on the shoulder of the on-ramp at exit 324 near Giltner. The driver, Franklin Schillfarth, 55, of Maryland, was arrested and was lodged in Hamilton County Jail.

On Wednesday at approximately 7:20 a.m. CT, another trooper stopped an eastbound Kia Rio for speeding at 114 miles per hour on I-80 near North Platte at mile marker 176. Marijuana containers were plainly visible in the vehicle and the trooper found approximately two pounds of marijuana during a search. The driver, Brianna Glover, 23, and passenger, Rashawn Hampton, 23, both of Michigan were arrested and lodged in Lincoln County Jail.

At approximately 9:00 a.m. CT Wednesday, a trooper stopped a Chevy pickup pulling a trailer for failing to stay in its lane near Kearney at mile marker 280. The trooper could smell the odor of marijuana in the vehicle and conducted a search. The search revealed personal use marijuana and a handgun. Additionally three pounds of marijuana was located hidden inside a large, older television. An investigation revealed that the driver was unaware of the marijuana inside the television. The driver, Ryan Taylor, 35, of Florida, was arrested and cited for a concealed handgun violation and personal use marijuana. He was lodged in Buffalo County Jail.

Finally, at approximately 10:45 a.m. MT, a trooper discovered seven pounds of marijuana after stopping an eastbound Hyundai Sonata for speeding near Kimball at mile marker 18. The driver, Christopher Seligman, 35, of Maryland, was arrested and lodged in Kimball County Jail.


NOVEMBER 26, 2018 (LINCOLN, NEB.)  — Nebraska State Troopers removed 16 impaired drivers from the road, issued more than 500 speeding citations, and assisted hundreds of motorists during a special Click It or Ticket enforcement surrounding the Thanksgiving weekend.

The enforcement, which was part of a national effort, including many other law enforcement agencies in Nebraska, was made possible thanks in part to a grant for $20,000 from the Nebraska Department of Transportation - Highway Safety Office.

“A projected record numbers of travelers, along with a winter storm that blanketed much of the state on Sunday, made for an eventful weekend for our troopers,” said Colonel John Bolduc, Superintendent of the Nebraska State Patrol. “I’m incredibly proud of the effort by our troopers and dispatchers this weekend, and thankful that many drivers planned ahead and were able to stay off the roads on Sunday.”

During the enforcement, which ran from Wednesday, November 21 through Sunday, November 25, troopers arrested 15 people for driving under the influence of alcohol and 1 for driving under the influence of drugs. In addition to those arrests, troopers issued citations for speeding (506), driving under suspension (35), no proof of insurance (33), minor in possession (5), open container (7), no seat belt (30), and improper child restraint (4).

Troopers also assisted 267 motorists in need of help, arrested 47 people for possession of drugs, and apprehended 9 fugitives.

The enforcement included vehicle checks, high visibility and saturation patrols, as well as regular enforcement efforts.

COLUMBUS, Neb. (AP) — A 19-year-old driver is scheduled to be sentenced Feb. 26 for the Platte County crash death of a motorcyclist.

Court records say Daisy Gonzalez, of Madison, pleaded no contest Tuesday to misdemeanor vehicular homicide. Prosecutors dropped a related charge in return for her plea.

The records say the collision occurred Aug. 2 at the intersection of Nebraska Highway 91 and 490th Street. The records say her minivan collided with the motorcycle driven by 22-year-old Joshua Gasper, of Columbus. He died days later of his injuries.

News Director Ryan Baker talked to Police Chief Dennis DaMoude tonight after the shooting in Holdrege Thursday afternoon.  

Press Release from Nebraska State Patrol

A Holdrege man has been arrested following the shooting deaths of two people and the wounding of a third person in multiple incidents that occurred in Holdrege during the afternoon hours of Thursday, February 21.

At approximately 2:30 p.m., the Holdrege Police Department responded to a report of a shooting at 416 Logan Street. Multiple law enforcement agencies responded to the incident. Additional crime scenes were then identified in multiple units at the Sunrise View Apartments at 1422 12th Avenue.

A short time later, a vehicle owned by the suspect was seen traveling in the north part of Holdrege. A short, low-speed pursuit ensued and the suspect drove to the Phelps County Sheriff’s Office where he was taken into custody without further incident.  

The suspect, Manuel Gomez, 45, of Holdrege, has been lodged in Phelps County Jail. Gomez is the only suspect in all three shootings.

The victims are identified as Raymond Burton, 65, David Rogers, 54, both of whom were found deceased in separate units of the Sunrise View Apartments. The third victim, Doyle Morse, 64, was able to call 911 after being shot at 416 Logan Street. He has been life-flighted to Good Samaritan Hospital in Kearney in critical condition.

The Nebraska State Patrol has been assisted by the Holdrege Police Department, the Phelps County Sheriff’s Office, and South Central Area Law Enforcement Services in the investigation. The investigation is ongoing.

Interview with Dennis DaMoude


Monday, February 25 th : Cheyenne County KS (St. Francis) St. Francis Emergency Building, 125 W Hwy 36

Tuesday, February 26 th : Thomas County (Colby) Community Building downstairs, 285 E 5 th Street
Monday, March 4 th : Greeley County (Tribune) Tribune Fire Department, Ingalls and W Greeley Avenue
Tuesday, March 5 th : Graham County (Hill City) Frontier Stage, 321 Main Street
Thursday March 7 th : Hitchcock County (Culbertson) Culbertson Fire Station, Warsaw and Taylor
Monday, March 11 th : Decatur County (Oberlin) Golden Age Center, 105 W Maple Street
Tuesday, March 12 th : Sherman County (Goodland) Wolak Building, 1006 Center Street
Wednesday, March 13 th : Cheyenne County CO (Kit Carson) Kit Carson Volunteer Fire Department, 306 W 287/Hwy 40
Thursday, March 14 th : Dundy County (Benkelman) EMS Building, 1305 A Street
Friday, March 15 th : Wallace County (Sharon Springs) Wallace County Fairgrounds CAB Building
Monday, March 18 th : Kit Carson County (Burlington) Burlington Ambulance Building, 1576 Lowell Avenue
Tuesday, March 19 th : Yuma County (Wray) Wray Fire Hall, 145 Main Street
Wednesday, March 20 th : Red Willow County (McCook) Heritage Senior Center, 1312 W 5 th Street
Thursday, March 21 st : Wichita County (Leoti) Leoti Fire House, 301 N 4 th Street
Monday, March 25 th : Gove County (Grainfield) Gove County 4-H Building, 757 W 3 rd Street
Tuesday, March 26 th : Sheridan County (Hoxie) Bowen Scott House, 1041 Sheridan Avenue
Thursday, March 28 th : Logan County (Oakley) Logan County Courthouse downstairs, 710 W 2 nd Street
Tuesday, April 2 nd : Rawlins County (Atwood) Prairie Development Center, 208 S 4 th Street
Wednesday, April 3 rd : Norton County (Norton) Prairie Land Electric Cooperative, 14935 US Hwy 36

DEWITT, Neb. (AP) — Authorities say a 2-year-old Nebraska boy died after he was hit by a bus driven by his father.
The Beatrice Daily Sun reports the incident happened Saturday in the driveway of the family's rural home about 5 miles east of DeWitt in southeast Nebraska.
Just before 1 p.m. Saturday, the family called for help after the boy was run over. Two-year-old Maddox Weber died at the scene.
The Nebraska State Patrol is investigating.


30th Annual Spooktacular

October 19th-21st and October 26th-30th


$8 per person + new this year; Scary section $2 extra

Games, characters, bounce houses provided by Planet Bounce and treats for

the kids! Fun for the whole family! Help us celebrate 30 years of spooky fun at

the Zoo!

Also new this year is the Flying Spaghetti Monster dinner

October 20th and 27th

$15 for Kids, $20 for Adults or Family pack for 2 Adults and 2 Kids for $60

A fun Halloween themed spaghetti dinner each Saturday of Spooktacular from

5pm-6pm. Includes fun foods and animal visits. Admission to Spooktacular is

included with ticket price for dinner. Dinner guests will also get into

Spooktacular before the general public.

LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts announced the agenda for the 31st Governor’s Ag Conference, which brings together ag producers, industry leaders and agri-business managers in Nebraska on an annual basis to talk about the future of agriculture.  The conference is scheduled for Monday and Tuesday, March 4-5, 2019, at the Younes Conference Center in Kearney.

“For 31 years, the Governor’s Ag Conference has been a premiere forum for Nebraska farmers, ranchers, and industry leaders to come together to discuss agriculture and how to keep growing our state’s number one industry,” said Governor Ricketts.  “We hope you can join us to talk about the future of agriculture in Nebraska.  It’s an opportunity you won’t want to miss.”

“We’ve asked industry experts at the local, state and federal level to lead discussions at this year’s Governor’s Ag Conference and share their knowledge and experience with producers and agribusiness leaders from around the state,” said Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA) Director Steve Wellman.  “Conference speakers and attendees can use this opportunity to connect with colleagues and prepare for the future.”

The conference starts Monday, March 4, 2019, at 3:30 p.m. with a panel presentation featuring Nebraska entrepreneurs and recruiters.  The panel includes representatives from three innovative Nebraska companies and three organizations involved heavily in recruiting companies to Nebraska.

On the entrepreneur side, the panelists are Vishal Singh with Quantified Ag; Lukas Fricke with ChorChek; and Mitch Minarick with FARMAFIELD.  These speakers will discuss their companies, goals, visions and why they chose Nebraska communities to start their businesses. 

The three people representing recruitment success are: Phil Kozera with Bio Nebraska; Dan Duncan with Innovation Campus; and Bryan Slone with the Nebraska State Chamber.  They will discuss their efforts in recruiting and how to find and attract startups as well as how to connect to established industries. 

Governor Ricketts will moderate this panel presentation that will include questions and answers from the audience.

The annual “Celebrate Nebraska Agriculture” reception, at 6 p.m. on March 4th will feature an assortment of food and beverages from Nebraska.

The conference resumes on Tuesday, March 5, 2019, at 9 a.m. with a presentation from Jim Smith, executive director of Blueprint Nebraska, an organization that is spearheading a statewide, citizen-led economic development initiative.

Governor Ricketts, NDA Director Wellman and Nebraska Department of Economic Development Director Dave Rippe will update conference participants on legislative initiatives in agriculture and highlight the work being done between state agencies to grow Nebraska.  This panel presentation will be moderated by NDA Assistant Director Amelia Breinig.

Next on the agenda will be Jim Wiesemeyer, with Pro Farmer, giving participants an update on the national farm bill and how it will impact farmers and ranchers nationwide as well as here in Nebraska.   

The Governor's Ag Conference is coordinated by the Nebraska Department of Agriculture and is co-sponsored by Farm Credit Services of America.  A $125 registration fee covers participation at activities on both Monday and Tuesday.  Registration and additional information is available online at, or by calling NDA toll-free at (800) 831-0550.


On March 5, 2019 Deputies were sent to mile marker 197 (just east of Brady, NE.) on U.S. Highway 30. It was reported two vehicles had struck each other and there were injuries to both drivers. Deputies arrived and met with the drivers of the vehicles.

The investigation showed a black GMC Denali was eastbound on Highway 30 in its proper lane. A white Mitsubishi Mirage was westbound on Highway 30 and crossed the center line and struck the GMC Denali. The driver of the GMC was injured but refused medical treatment.

The driver of the Mitsubishi suffered non-life threatening injuries and was transported to Great Plains Health. He was identified as thirty-one year old Joshua Baker of North Platte. Deputies believed Mr. Baker was under the influence of narcotics at the time of the accident. Deputies found suspected THC Wax in the vehicle and other items. Mr. Baker did not have a license or insurance at the time of the accident. Criminal charges are pending Mr. Bakers release from the hospital and laboratory testing. The investigation continues.

On 2/5/19 at approximately 21:43, Scottsbluff Police responded to the intersection of Hwy 26 and 5th Ave in reference to an injury accident involving two vehicles.  The investigation found that a blue 2005 Chrysler Pacifica driven by Austin Rhamy (20) of Scottsbluff and a gray 2004 GMC Yukon driven by Raquel Wurdeman (23) of Gering were involved in the accident.  It was found that the Chrysler was north bound on 5th Ave and the GMC was east bound on Hwy 26.  The Chrysler and GMC collided in the intersection.  Both drivers reported they each had the green traffic signal in their respective directions of travel.  There were no witnesses on scene to confirm which direction of travel had the green traffic signal.  Both vehicles were estimated to have $7000 in damages.  Both vehicles were required to be towed from the scene.  Wurdeman and one passenger in the GMC had complaints of pain, but declined to be transported by ambulance for treatment.  Scottsbluff Fire Department and Valley Ambulance responded to the accident.  Eastbound lanes of Hwy 26 at 5th Ave were closed for approximately 45 minutes while the accident was investigated. 

SCOTTSBLUFF – Western Nebraska never trailed, but the game for the Region IX south sub-region title was tied at 71 with 3:23 left before the Cougars hit a couple critical 3-pointers in the final 90 seconds of the game on the way to an 82-76 win.

North Platte falls to 23-4, and 9-3 in the south standings and will take on McCook Community College (11-18) Saturday at home in a play-in game.

Western Nebraska rode an early 17-3 run to mount a 21-point lead at 37-16 and led at the half, 50-32.

North Platte fought back and went on an 11-0 run to tie the game for the first time with 3:23 left in the game.

Freshman Tim Johnson (Arlington, Texas) led the Knights with 23 points. Courtney Murrell (Plano, Texas) scored 16 points and sophomore Jakub Karwowski (Warsaw, Poland) scored 10 points to go along with a game-high 12 rebounds.

After shooting 32 percent from the field in the first half, the Knights shot it at a 45.9 percent in the second half and 40.3 percent for the game. NPCC was six for 17 (35.3 percent) from the 3-point line and 20 of 23 from the foul line (87 percent).

Western shot 50.8 percent from the field for the game, made 12 of 32 shots from distance (37.5 percent) and eight of 16 from the free throw line (50 percent). The Cougars out-rebounded North Platte 39-34.

Sophomore Jervay Green led Western Nebraska with 26 points. Dru Kuxhausen scored 23 including a 3-pointer with 90 seconds left in the game to put the Cougars up 76-71. Martin Roub, scored 17 points including a 3-pointer with 55 seconds to give Western a 79-73 lead.

The Cougars (23-7 on the year and 10-2 in the south sub-region) clinches an automatic bid to the Region IX tournament at Sheridan, Wyo. March 7-9.



The No. 19 Western Nebraska Community College rebounded from a first set loss and rolled through the next three in topping No. 20 Northeastern Junior College 24-26, 25-12, 25-18, 25-14 to win the Region IX South Conference Wednesday night at Cougar Palace.


The win was the Cougars eighth straight and moved WNCC to 22-7 overall and 8-1 in South Conference play. NJC drops to 20-6 and 6-3 in conference play. Both teams have one conference game left, WNCC travels to McCook on Friday and NJC goes to McCook on Tuesday.


“I think we played very well tonight,” sophomore Enna Masaki said. “We really wanted it and we showed it.”


It was a night where the Cougars were on top of their game in collecting the No. 1 seed from the South in next month’s Region IX tournament in Cheyenne. Masaki said it feels good to win the conference after last season finishing second.


“For us it [winning the conference] means everything because we were ranked and then we got out of the ranking. It was hard for us to come back into the ranking. We now just have to stay in the ranking and maintain our playing right now.”


It wasn’t just one player that was hot, it was a majority of players that stepped up in different capacities. WNCC finished with a 55 kills and had nine solo blocks. The team also had three service aces and four players finish with double-figure digs.


Four Cougars had double-double performances. Masaki finished with 16 kills and 16 digs, while Jayme Commins had 13 digs and 42 set assists. Adia Sherbeyn tallied 11 digs and 13 points, while Ana Costas had 32 digs and 13 points.


Gaby Canavati led the way offensively, putting down 18 kills, while Amryi-Grace Paris had 11 kills.


The night didn’t start out well for the Cougars as they enjoyed a 14-10 lead in the first set before falling 26-24. After that, though, the Cougars took control of the match in the next three sets behind solid play offensively and defensively to thwart the Plainswomen’s rallies.


“A big difference in the last three sets is they took out their starting setter,” Masaki said. “Also our passing was rough in the beginning [first set] and we knew we had to pick it up and we did pick it up. We were running more offensive plays too, so that helped us a lot.”


The next three sets were a total difference. WNCC led from start to finish in set two, grabbing a 3-0 lead behind Sherbeyn’s serving and pushed the lead to 15-7 on three more Sherbeyn points. Costas got into the serving game later, serving six points for a 22-9 lead to help them to the 25-12 win.


WNCC led 10-4 in the third set and went ahead 17-7 on five points from Sherbeyn and never looked back, winning 25-18.


The fourth set was the third straight set that WNCC never trailed. WNCC led 6-4 before running to an 11-4 lead behind four Camille Esselin points. WNCC pushed it to 18-10 and later to 23-12 before winning 25-14.


WNCC also received six points and two solo blocks from Masaki on the night; four digs from Canavati; five kills from Leslie Mamai-Lagafuaina; three kills, five digs, and seven points from Kaile Tuisamatatele; and three digs and eight points from Esselin.


WNCC will look to win their ninth straight when they travel to McCook to face McCook Community College on Friday at 5 p.m. Masaki said they have to keep playing with plenty of energy and keep playing hard.


“We just need to keep the same energy that we have,” she said. “After every win that we have, we need to keep the same energy, maintain it, and stay high.”


 The Western Nebraska Community College men’s basketball team brought the Region IX South title back home to Cougar Palace Tuesday night.

                The Cougars earned the title with a hard fought win over North Platte Community College 82-76 in a game that saw WNCC lead from start to finish and saw sophomore Bryce Sanchious hit four clutch free throws down the stretch lift the Cougars to the sub-region win and giving them a bye into next week’s Region IX tournament March 7-9 in Sheridan, Wyoming.

                The win moves the Cougars to 23-7 overall but more importantly they sent the six sophomores – Jervay Green, Dru Kxhausen, Bryce Sanchious, Martin Roub, Henry Tanksley, and Marquis White – off to regionals in a win in the six’s final game at Cougar Palace.

                Green, who finished with a double-double of 26 points and 14 assists, said there is plenty of emotion right now realizing that they played their final game in front of a packed Cougar Palace, coming away with a win.

                “It is a bunch of emotions going on right now,” Green said after he helped the team win the South sub-region title and also playing his last game in Cougar Palace. “It is happy and sad. I am sad that I will miss playing here, but I am going on to bigger and better things now.”

                It was a win that the Cougars led from start to finish. There was just one tie, at 71-71 with four minutes to play.

                “That [North Platte never taking the lead] was good on our part because we were doing what we were supposed to being doing on defense,” Green said. “We just need to continue to do that.”

                Overall, Green will take the win because it was a good team effort to bring the sub-region title back to WNCC.

                “I think we played great. We came out very strong. Everything was there. The energy and the crowd was there. Everything was pumping. Everybody was going all crazy,” he said. “They made a little comeback in the second half, but it was all good. We came back and pulled it out.”

                WNCC started the game strong, bolting to a 10-2 lead on back-to-back treys by Kuxhausen and led 31-13 after a Roub bucket. The Cougars kept playing tough, leading 50-30 on a Green 3-pointer before taking a 50-34 lead into the lockerroom.

                North Platte outscored WNCC 44-32 in the second half and started to mount a comeback. WNCC led by double digits 71-60 before North Platte went on a 11-0 run to knot the score at 71-71 on a 3-pointer.

                The Cougars retook the lead on a Green bucket and then Kuxhausen hit a big 3-pointer with 1:35 to play to lead 76-71. North Platte nailed two free throws, but Roub came back with a trey and then Sanchious hit four free throws for the win.

                “That [different people hitting big shots] is real big,” Green said. “Most teams we play, they think it is just me or Marty or Dru on the team but that is not the case. It is our whole team. We have a lot of basketball players that can get to the bucket or play defense.”

                WNCC shot 51 percent for the game and were 12 of 32 from the 3-point field. The first half was the major reason for the win as WNCC shot 61 percent and buried nine treys.

                North Platte fortunes turned around from the first to the second. The Knights shot 32 percent I the first half and buried 2 of 7 treys. The second half, the Knights were 46 percent from the field and made four treys.

                WNCC made six more 3-pointers than North Platte, but the Knights were solid from the charity stripe, making 20 of 23 while WNCC was just 8 of 16.

                WNCC won the rebound battle 29-25 and dished off 30 assists. Roub led the Cougars from the glass with 11 followed by Sanchious with eight and Green with seven. Green had 14 assists with Kuxhausen finishing with eight.

                WNCC had three in double figures. After Green’s 26, Kuxhausen tallied 23 with seven 3-pointers. Roub had 17 points to go with his 11 boards.

                North Platte was led by Tim Johnson with 23 points.

                WNCC will now be in action March 7 at the Region IX tournament in Sheridan, Wyoming. The 3-day event will determine who will qualify for the national tournament in Hutchinson, Kansas. The Cougars are seeking to repeat as champs and Green said the week off will help the team get healed up and ready to go.

                “This win feels great right now,” Green said. “We got a win with the teammates and now we get this week off and let the team rebuild their strength. Everyone is beat up so this week will be well-deserved.”

                The complete final eight teams at the regional tournament won’t be decided until after Saturday’s first round. For Green and his teammates, they just have to continue taking care of business.

                “We are just going to take it game by game,” Green said. “Hopefully we come away with a tournament win and then on to Hutch. Nothing will be easy. We have been struggling the whole year, but we are ready for the challenge.”


North Platte (22-4)          32 44 – 76

WNCC (23-7)                      50 32 – 82


Courtney Murrell 16, Liva Turtyshnik 9, Tim Johnson 23, Luke Christen 3, Da’May Jones 9, Edgars Kaufmanis 6, Jakub Karwowski 10.

Dru Kuxhausen 23, Bryce Sanchious 6, Elie Cadet 8, Henry Tanksley 2, Jervay Green 26, Martin Roub 17.


 The Western Nebraska Community College women’s basketball team put four players in double figures in rolling to the 97-70 South sub-region win Sunday afternoon at Cougar Palace.

                The win was the Cougars 19th win on the year and their seventh straight. More importantly, WNCC moves to 5-0 in South sub-region play. The winner of the south sub-region hosts the regional tournament in March and gets a first-round bye.

                “We started off slow first half; we were only up five points at halftime,” freshman Taylor Joplin said. “We needed to pick it up defensively and I thought we did that second half. We ended up winning by 27 so we played alright.”

                The first half was a battle as WNCC held a slim 22-15 lead after the first quarter and then watched Trinidad pull to within one, 26-25, in the second quarter. WNCC pushed the lead back to nine points, 45-36 on a R’Manie Pulling 3-pointer. The Trojans scored the next four points to trail the Cougars 45-40 at halftime.

                Joplin said they knew they had to play better coming out of the locker room and they did, outscoring Trinidad 32-18 in the third and 20-12 in the fourth.

                “Coach told us at halftime to pick it up on defense,” she said. “We were doing fine offensively. We had 45 had half so we just needed to pick up the defensive intensity.”

                WNCC started the third quarter on an 11-3 run to lead 56-43 and led 77-58 after three quarters and never looked back after that.

                WNCC had four players in double figures and saw 10 players hit the scoring column. Wiehl led all scorers with 22 points followed by 19 from Joplin, 15 from Tishara Morehouse, and 10 from Allysah Booth.

                The Cougars buried 14 3-pointers on the night. Joplin and Wiehl each had three, while Morehouse and Booth each had two. Yaidelis Torres, Yuliyana Valcheva, Eva Langton, and Pulling all had one trey.

                WNCC out-rebounded the Trojans 46-30. Wiehl, Joplin, and Andrijana Reljic each had four boards. Morehouse finished with a team-high six assists.

                The Cougars’ second half defense was a big factor in the win. Trinidad shot 45 percent in the first half but then held the Trojans to just 33 percent shooting in the final 20 minutes.

                Trinidad had four in double figures. Kate Rohr led Trinidad with 14 points followed by 13 from Julia Trujillo.

                WNCC, 19-3, will hit the road for a Region IX South sub-region contest Tuesday at McCook Community College. The Cougars will then return home for a contest against Eastern Wyoming College on Feb. 11.


Trinidad (11-10)                15 25 18 12 – 70

WNCC (19-3)                      22 23 32 20 – 97


Shaylynn Choate 2, Kate Rohr 14, Lyric Thompson 10, Destinee Vigil 7, Nuria Saez 11, Linsi Calvo 9, Hannah Gilmore 4, Julia Trujillo 13.


Tishara Morehouse 15, Merle Wiehl 22, Allysah Boothe 10, Andrijana Reljic 2, Anyssia Gibbs 7, R’Manie Pulling 5, Eva Langton 7, Yuliyana Valcheva 7, Taylor Joplin 19, Yaidelis Torres 3.


CASPER, Wyo. – The Western Nebraska Community College women’s basketball team had some rust in the first game back from a 3-week break, shooting just 28 percent from the field in falling 83-63 to Casper College on Monday in Casper, Wyoming.

WNCC falls to 12-3 on the season and saw its 11-game winning streak snapped.

It was a contest that WNCC made runs all night long, but each time the Cougars made a run the Thunderbirds would answer with a run of their own.

Casper led early 9-2 only to watch WNCC cut the lead to 9-7. Casper responded to go up 16-10 after one quarter.

WNCC cut the lead to a single point in the second quarter at 26-25 on a 3-pointer, but Casper went on a 12-3 run to close out the half and lead 38-28 at the break.

The third quarter was one of WNCC’s best 10 minutes. WNCC opened the quarter with 3-pointers by Taylor Joplin and Merle Wiehl and knotted the score at 47-47 on a Tishara Morehouse trey. The two teams were knotted at 50 on a Joplin 3-pointer. The Cougars couldn’t get the lead with Casper taking a 57-50 lead and led 57-53 after three quarters.

The final frame was close for the first few minutes with WNCC trailing 63-60. It was at that juncture Casper went on a 9-0 run to lead 72-60 before a Wiehl 3-pointer with 3:20 to play stopped the run. Casper’s defense shut out the Cougars the rest of the game for the 20-point win.

Shooting was the difference. WNCC shot 28 percent from the field and was 31 percent (11-of-35) from beyond the arc. The Cougars made just 8 of 11 free throws.

Casper was much more fluid from the field. The Thunderbirds shot 46 percent from the field and 33 percent from beyond the arc (7-of-21). Casper also went to the free throw twice as much as the Cougars, burying 16 of 22 shots.

Another key in the contest was rebounding. The Thunderbirds out-boarded the Cougars 54-43. Casper’s Nerea Baena pulled down 20 boards to finish the game with a double-double. Baena also tossed in 26 points on 10-of-14 shooting from the field.

Casper had four players in double figures. After Baena, Jaye Johnson tallied 16 points followed by Lucie Hoskova with 13 and Maggie Justinak with 12.

WNCC had two in double figures. Joplin and Wiehl each had 17 points. Wiehl had five 3-pointers while Joplin had three. Wiehl, Joplin, and Eva Langton all had six rebounds to lead the team.

WNCC, 12-3, will look to get back on track this weekend when they host a pair of games. WNCC will host Northeast Community College on Friday at 5:30 p.m. before taking on Otero Junior College at 2 p.m. on Saturday in the Region IX South sub-region opener.



WNCC (12-3) 10 18 25 10 – 63

Casper (11-4) 16 22 19 26 – 83



Merle Wiehl 17, Allysah Boothe 3, Andrijana Reljic 2, Eva Langton 3, Taylor Joplin 17, Tishara Morehouse 7, R’Manie Pulling 5, Yuliyana Valcheva 8.



Raquel Ferrer Bernad 5, Nerea Baena 26, Maggie Justinak 12, Jaye Johnson 16, Lucie Hoskova 13, Nazli Bayazit 2, Ashley Tehau 7, Reka Soos 2.

  The Western Nebraska Community College women’s basketball team put five players in double figures in downing Otero Junior College 104-66 in the Region IX South Sub-region opener for both squads.
                The Cougars shot 54 percent from the field while burying 16 3-pointers in posting their 14th win of the season.
                Eva Langton, who finished with eight points and started the 3-point barrage with the Cougars’ first trey of the game, said the team played well on both sides of the ball.
                “I thought we played really well as a team which was the goal,” the sophomore from New Zealand said. “We worked really well off each other on defense. Overall it was a really good game especially coming back after break. I am really looking forward to our next games.”
                Langton also had plenty of support in the crowd this weekend as her family from New Zealand flew over for Christmas and got to watch her play. Langton said that was special for her and the team.
                “It has been awesome [to have my family here],” Langton said. “It is different being international when you can’t have your family come to any games. So, they came over here and get to see me play and also just not me but the whole team, and see the community I have been living in. It has been great and I am blessed that they got to come over.”
                The players did put on an offensive clinic for Langton’s family and the rest of the fans the last two days in scoring 203 total points in wins over Northeast Community College on Friday and Otero Saturday.
                WNCC was clicking from start to finish on Saturday against Otero. The Cougars first five field goals were all 3-pointers as they went up 15-6.  Langton had the first trey and then Tishara Morehouse and Taylor Joplin each had two treys. WNCC led 27-14 after one quarter.
                Langton said this team has plenty of offensive weapons.
                “We always talk about how much better we are when we play together,” Langton said. “We always talk about making extra passes and we did that tonight.”
                Merle Wiehl led all scorers with 22 points. Wiehl knocked down four 3-pointers and the sophomore from Germany moved into second place on the career scoring chart with 951 points passing Shana Coleman who had 944 career points. Wiehl is just 76 points away from breaking the career scoring record of 1,026 set by Penny Mallet in the 1981-83 seasons.
                Wiehl had plenty of support on offense. Tishara Morehouse had 18 points and two treys, while Taylor Joplin had 16 points and four 3-pointers. Yuliyana Valcheva tallied 11 points and a trey, while R’Manie Pulling had 10 points and a 3-pointer.
                Langton and Allysah Boothe each had two 3-pointers to finish out the Cougars 16 treys on the afternoon.
                WNCC’s offense continued to start the second quarter as Wiehl, Pulling, and Valcheva all connected on treys for a 38-15 lead. Otero fought back with a 10-0 run to cut the deficit to 38-25, but the Cougars took a 44-29 lead into the locker room.
                WNCC was just as explosive in the second half, outscoring the Rattlers 35-21 in the third period in building an 82-50 lead after three quarters. The Cougars opened the fourth quarter with seven straight points and hit the century mark for the sixth time this season with a minute to play on a Boothe 3-pointer.
                WNCC will be back in action next weekend when they hit the road for two South Sub-region contests when they face Northeastern Junior College on Friday and Lamar Community College on Saturday. The Cougars will return home January 22 when they host McCook Community College.
Otero                    14 15 21 16 – 66
WNCC (14-3)      27 20 35 22 – 104
Kaitlyn Roycroft 3, Zaryna Ibarra-Urbina 2, Hilda Garcia 9, McClain Walker 4, Laura Prado-Morales 13, Charisse Fairley 15, Grace O’Neil 8, Alessia Capley 12
Tishara Morehouse 18, Merle Wiehl 22, Allysah Boothe 8, Andrijana Reljic 4, Kolby Underwood 3, Anyssia Gibbs 4, R’Manie Pulling 10, Eva Langton 8, Yuliyana Valcheva 11, Taylor Joplin 16

 Merle Wiehl connected for 28 points and the 21st-ranked Western Nebraska Community College women’s basketball team rolled to 95-43 win over Sheridan College in the quarterfinals of the Region IX tournament at Cougar Palace Thursday evening.

                WNCC, who moved to 27-3, will face Eastern Wyoming College in the semifinals Friday night at 7 p.m. The Lancers escaped with a thrilling 86-85 win over McCook Community College.

                The other semifinal will pit Northeastern Junior College and Casper College together at 5 p.m. NJC earned a 72-61 win over Laramie County Community College while Casper had no trouble in earning a 75-49 win over Otero Junior College.

                WNCC head coach Chad Gibney thought this win was one of the team’s most complete wins.

                “It certainly was a good one tonight. I thought we played a complete game,” he said. “I can’t say enough about the girls. They were really good tonight and hopefully we can continue that going forward.”

                WNCC led from start to finish in the contest and jumped on the Generals by making three straight 3-pointers, two from Taylor Joplin and one from Wiehl for an 11-0 lead. WNCC led 25-9 after one quarter.

                “I thought we jumped on them early,” Gibney said. “We did a great job of sharing the basketball. Everything looks better when the ball goes through the basket. Sixteen made threes is always a recipe for a win. But mix that with holding them to 26 percent shooting. We were really good in about every aspect.”

                WNCC led 48-22 at halftime and really never looked back. In fact, the Cougars’ defense played just as strong in the second half, holding the Generals to 21 points. WNCC scored 47 in the final 20 minutes.

                WNCC shot 48 percent from the field and buried 16 3-pointers. The Cougars hit 10 treys in the first half, half from Wiehl. WNCC also dished off 23 assists, led by seven from Tishara Morehouse and four each from R’Manie Pulling and Joplin.

                Sheridan shot just 26 percent from the field and made just 2 of 21 treys.

                WNCC had four in double figures. Wiehl led all scorers with 28 points with six 3-pointers on 10 of 13 shooting. Joplin and Morehouse each had 15 points. Both players also buried three treys. Allysah Boothe tallied 14 points with two treys.

                Eva Langton and Yuliyana Valcheva each had seven points. Valcheva led the team with nine boards, while Langton led with five steals.

                Sheridan was paced by Lani Taliauli with 15 points.

                WNCC will battle EWC for a spot in the semifinals on Friday. Gibney said it will be a good game.

                “They have really guard play and they play with a lot of confidence and they play free,” he said. “We will have to play a good game. At this time of the year you can’t afford to have an off night.


Sheridan              9 13 13 8 -- 43   

WNCC (27-3)      25 23 23 24 -- 95


Darcy Walker 2, Aloma Solvi 9, Noora Parttimaa 3, Tala Tuisavura 2, Cynthia Green 6, Kassie Hoyer 4, Misini Fifita 2, Lani Taliauli 15.


Tishara Morehouse 15, Merle Wiehl 28, Allysah Boothe 14, Anyssia Gibbs 5, R’Manie Pulling 4, Eva Langton 7, Yuliyana Valcheva 7, Taylor Joplin 15.

Merle Wiehl poured in 32 points and the Western Nebraska Community College women’s basketball team earned a convincing 101-56 over Northwest College in the Cougar's home opener Wednesday night at Cougar Palace.

The win moves the Cougars to 3-2 on the season.

“It is always exciting to be back at home after being on the road for such a long time," women's basketball coach Chad Gibney said. "You can never complain about a 40-point win. Obviously, there are things that we will stress and continue to work on, but I am pleased with our first home performance.”

The early going, however, probably was because of nerves. But once the team settled in, they played in a groove.

“There is always some nervous playing in front of the home crowd for the first time,” Gibney said. “I think one of our strengths this year is our depth and so we can wear people down throughout the course of the game.”

It was an opening night where the Cougars shot 56 percent from the field, including popping home 14 3-pointers. More impressively, the Cougars were 17 of 20 from the free throw line.

Gibney said it was truly a team effort with several players contributing at different times.

“We had a number of people step up when we needed a play to be made,” he said. “I thought Taylor [Joplin[ got us going early. Then I thought T [Tishara Morehouse] and M [Merle Wiehl] chipped in with some scoring. The reality is, it is a team effort. We had a whole team of people that gave us good performances tonight.”

Taylor Joplin opened the game scoring the first eight points for the Cougars as the Cougars raced to a 19-9 lead. Northwest cut the lead to 19-12 before a bucket by Yuliyana Valcheva gave the Cougars a 21-12 lead after one quarter.

The second quarter saw Tishara Morehouse and Valcheva take over as the Cougars went up 36-18 behind a 3-pointer by Wiehl and a bucket by Morehouse. Later, Joplin nailed a trey and Wiehl capped off the half with a 3-pointer for a 45-26 lead.

The second half saw the Cougars outscore the Trappers 56-30, including scoring 30 in the third quarter. The third quarter saw several mini-runs, including an 11-0 run that was highlighted by Morehouse’s five points and Wiehl’s four points. Later, WNCC went on a 9-0 run behind a 3-pointer by Allysah Boothe trey and a 68-33 lead. WNCC led 75-43 after three quarters.

Any hope of a Trapper comeback was silenced in the first two minutes of the fourth quarter as Wiehl, the sophomore from Germany ripped off 13 straight points for a 90-46 lead with 5:46 to play. WNCC hit the century mark for the first time with under a minute to play on an R’Manie Pulling 3-pointer from the corner.

The Cougars had seven different players hit a 3-pointer on the night. Wiehl buried six, while Joplin had two along with Boothe. Morehouse, Kolby Underwood, Anyssia Gibbs, and Pulling each had one trey.

Four Cougars hit double digits. Behind Wiehl’s 32 points, Morehouse tallied 19 from the bench, including a perfect 6-for-6 from the charity stripe. Joplin and Valcheva each had 13 points.

Northwest didn’t have anyone in double digits. Juliana Ribeiro and Berkley Larsen each had nine points, while Selena Cudney, Jenna Lohrenz, and Melissa Martinez each had seven.

While the offense was clicking, the defense started to pick up as well. WNCC held Northwest to 30 percent shooting, including holding them to just five 3-pointers. The Cougars forced 23 Trapper turnovers while getting five blocked shots. Eva Langton and Valcheva each had two blocks.

Catching up with the Cougars Chad Gibney

Western Nebraska Community College women’s basketball team had three players score over 20 points and the Cougar women used a strong first half in registering a 98-63 win over McCook Community College in a Region IX South sub-region contest Tuesday night at Cougar Palace.         

                The win was the Cougars 17th of the season but more importantly, moved the Cougars to 4-0 in sub-region play.

                Tishara Morehouse and Taylor Joplin each finished with 24 points, while Merle Wiehl tallied 21. Wiehl now needs only five points to set the career scoring record of 1.026 set in 1983 by Penny Mallet. The Cougar women will next be in action Monday night when they host Casper College at 6 p.m.

                WNCC head coach Chad Gibney said the team had a strong first half and it was a good team win.

                “It was a huge win for us. McCook is a very good basketball team,” Gibney said. “We set the tone early and took it to them with our aggressiveness. I thought we did an excellent job on the glass. I thought our defensive pressure really stifled them.”

                Gibney said they had good balanced scoring and they shared the ball.

                “We had some great performances tonight,” he said. “Can’t say enough of how our team played tonight to be able to knock off a really good basketball team.”

                The contest was billed to be an offensive showcase as both WNCC and McCook are ranked in the top six nationally in scoring.

                The game started out that way, too, as Mccook grabbed a 5-4 lead on an Anna Sanjuan 3-pointer. It was then the Cougars defensive pressure stepped up, going on a 19-0 run to lead 23-5. The run included a variety of players contributing from Wiehl getting back-to-back buckets, to Morehouse and R’Manie Pulling burying consecutive 3-pointers. WNCC led 28-9 after one period.

                WNCC continued the defensive intensity in the second quarter, opening the period on a 9-0 run for a 37-9 lead and raced to a 49-22 halftime lead.

                Any hopes of a McCook comeback in the third quarter was quickly erased as WNCC put together 6-0 and 9-0 consistently in outscoring the Indians 37-17 in the period. WNCC led late in the period 86-35 before McCook scored the final four points to cut the lead to 86-39 after three.

                McCook outscored WNCC 24-12 in the fourth quarter, but by then the Cougars had salted away the victory after Yaidelis Torres buried a 3-pointer for a 94-49 lead.

                WNCC had eight players hit the scoring column. Gibney said a lot of people game up big, whether scoring, rebounding, or providing an assist.

                “It certainly is a team win,” he said.

                Morehouse tallied 24 points on 10 of 17 shooting from the floor with three 3-pointers. She also had four rebounds, four steals, and two assists.

                Joplin tallied her 24 points on two treys, 6 of 6 shooting from the free throw line, while also pulling down five rebounds.

                Wiehl finished with 21 points on 10 of 19 shooting. Wiehl had an all-around game leading the team with eight rebounds, four assists, four steals, and did not commit a turnover.

                Pulling tallied eight points with four assists, while Yuliyana Valcheva had eight points with five rebounds.

                Torres finished with seven points and two treys on the night.

                WNCC will have a week off before the rematch with Casper. In the first meeting on January 7, Casper topped the Cougars 83-63. Gibney said they are will be ready.

                “We are excited to play Casper again,” he said. “They are the defending champs. They are undefeated in league and it will be a great test for us.”


McCook               9 13 17 24 – 63

WNCC (17-3)      28 21 37 12 – 98


Anna Sanjuan 10, Hailey Tiles 18, Makayla Jones 8, Laura Mata 2, Sam Hinkle 8, Lena Goerke 9, Destiny Davis 2, MaKenna Bodette 6.


Tishara Morehouse 24, Merle Wiehl 21, Andrijana Reljic 4, Anyssia Gibbs 2, R’Manie Pulling 8, Yuliyana Valcheva 8, Taylor Joplin 24, Yaidelis Torres 7.

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