'Out of gas': Jays unable to win out against Demons

The Jamestown High School girls basketball team hosted Bismarck High on Feb. 3.

jhs girls hoops 12 vs bhs 24 020322.jpg
Jamestown's Rylee Joseph brings the ball into play while being guarded by Peyton Neumiller of Bismarck on Thursday, Feb. 3, 2022, at Jerry Meyer Arena.
John M. Steiner / The Jamestown Sun

JAMESTOWN — Being one team member short in a big-time match-up is never a situation a head coach likes to plan for.

It was twice as bad for Andy Skunberg.

"The girls battled hard tonight and we just kind of ran out of gas," Skunberg said. "I am proud of their effort tonight."

Skunberg and the Blue Jay crew battled hard against visiting Bismarck High but wound up dropping 73-53 to the Demons. The loss is the Jays' first since they lost a buzzer-beating heartbreaker to Minot on Jan. 13.

Jamestown's next chance at a win will come on Saturday against Turtle Mountain. Tip-off is set for 1:30 p.m. at Jerry Meyer Arena.


Being without Annie Nabwe and Haylie Hakanson the Jays were looking to try out the zone and put some pressure on the Demons to hit some outside shots.

The Jays capitalized early, running a few plays that left Hunter Petersen wide open under the basket. Petersen tabulated six points the opening eight minutes.

Hot-handed shooting from Rylee Joseph helped make up for Nabwe's absence when Joseph squared up for a shot that made it 9-5 Blue Jays early on. Joseph nailed five from 3-point range en route to her 15 team-leading points.

Bismarck got its fair share of looks but some miscues on passes and too-strong of shots made for some second-chance points by the Jays and the score soon stood at 14-10 Jays.

A 3 from the top of the key by Peyton Neumiller made it a one-point game with just over10 minutes to play. Neumiller capped off the three-minute scoring drought with a pair from the line and a bucket she delivered on a route to the basket.

"They didn't hit a lot of shots but they were getting some more second-chance opportunities but with zone you kind of expect that a little bit, especially with a small lineup," Skunberg said.

Katie Falk found herself in a little bit of foul trouble early on, picking up three. Skunberg put the junior back on the floor with 4:30 remaining in the opening frame where she notched four of her six first-half points. Falk and Ella Falk combined for seven, unofficial first-half nabs at the hoop.

Bismarck was up 19-15 when Falk hit a key pair from the stipe to knock down the Demons' lead to two. Paige Breuer made it a five-point game with a 3-pointer.


Ella made all six of her points in the last six minutes of the first, making two back-to-back 3s to draw the Jays back within two of the game leaders. Ella also dished out a great pass out to Petersen who passed it up the court to Falk who laid it in for two to put the Jays up 25-24 with less than a minute remaining in regulation. Petersen was the Jays' top-scorer in the first half with seven total points and a pair of rebounds.

Ali Gulleson drilled a 3-point shot from the left wing making it 27-25 Demons at the half.

The Jays responded well, with Katie Trumbauer and Joseph knocking down five shots from 3-point range to establish a 41-37 lead over the No. 3 team in the West.

But the game was far from over.

Bismarck kicked off a 15-0 scoring run with a two-point lay-in from Sydney Gerving. Bobbles and the threat of more foul trouble kept the Jays cautious and the Demons proceeded to build a 56-41 advantage.

"We had two or three turnovers in a row and that gave them some momentum and sometimes it is hard to come back," Skunberg said. "We had a couple of key shots that didn't go in and being 8-for-16 in free throws didn't help either."

With six minutes left to play, Karli Remmick produced the Jays' first score in nearly seven minutes with a two-point bucket to make it 56-43. Ella followed the score with a 3 dropped in from the top of the key.

Ella ended the game with nine points while Trumbauer's trio of 3s got her into double digits. Trumbauer ended with night with 10.


Gulleson drew up Falk's fifth foul of the game with a drive to the inside, allowing for an and-one that made it a 63-49 — a score that grew to a 22-point game with 70 seconds left on the clock. The Demons held the ball for the remaining 10 seconds to end it up 73-53.

"We handled their press a lot better the first half and they actually got out of it a little bit in the first half," Skunberg said. "They battled. Turtle Mountain is the next game up. We've got to be ready to go on Saturday."

Bismarck High 73, Jamestown 53

BHS 27 46 — 73

JHS 25 28 — 73

BHS — Peyton Neumiller 20, Payton Gerving 13, Ali Gulleson 12, Paige Bruer 8, Sydney Gerving 6, Miyah Holzworth 6, Raya Rood 6, Katie Greff 2. Totals: 31 FG, 11-14 FT, 18 fouls. 3-pointers: P. Gerving 3, Breuer 2, Neumiller 1, Gullseon 1.

JHS — Joseph 15, Trumbauer 10, Petersen 9, E. Falk 9, K. Falk 7, Remmick 2, Jada Walter 1. Totals: 17 FG, 8-16 FT, 11 fouls. 3-pointers: Joseph 5, Trumbauer 3, E. Falk 3.

Katie Ringer is a sports reporter for the Jamestown Sun. Katie joined the Sun staff in the summer of 2019 after graduating from the University of Wisconsin Eau Claire with a degree in journalism. She can be reached by email at or by phone at 701-952-8460.
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