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Notre Dame girls basketball repeats as SEMO Conference Regular Season Champions

Notre Dame 6-foot-2 sophomore post Nevaeh Lucious recorded a career-high six blocks in the Bulldogs 50-15 win over Cape Central last Wednesday night at Jerry Grim Court. Photo by Nick McNeal

For the second season in a row, the Notre Dame girls basketball team has swept the SEMO Conference by winning both the tournament and regular-season championships.

The Bulldogs (19-5, 7-0 SEMO) secured the regular-season crown with a 45-point, 50-15 win over Cape Central at home last week. Leading the scoring attack for Notre Dame was the freshman trio of 6-foot forward Kate Rubel, 6-2 post Nevaeh Lucious and 5-9 point guard Brie Rubel as they combined for 29 points.

Finishing with a game-high 12 points was Kate Rubel as she shot 62.5 percent from the field and knocked down both of her 3-point attempts — all in the first half. This was telling for an unselfish player like Kate that is second in Notre Dame in assists with three per game and fields Division-I offers from Abilene Christian and UT Martin, as does Brie.

Scoring wise, it’s been spread out for the Bulldogs this year as Kate is currently the team’s fourth leader in points with 7.8 per game, while her older sister 6-1 senior guard Tori Rubel leads with 11.1 as Brie and Lucious pace with 8.1 and eight, respectively.

“You want to see people get other shots, so that’s what I like about it,” Kate said. “I love stacking up my assists, but tonight I was like, ‘I want to put some points on the board.’ Having so many scoring options helps — Brie is going to get wide and Nevaeh is going to go to the opposite block, so I can drive or kick out to Brie. Then Tori is going to come behind me if they’re there, so I know where everyone is about to go, which helps a lot.”

Lucious paced Kate with nine points of her own, and she also made a significant impact defensively with a career-high six blocks. This was the fifth time Nevaeh has recorded five blocks or more this season and leads Notre Dame with an average of 2.7 per game (64 total).

“I usually plan to go straight up for a block, but I know I have an advantage when players are shorter than me,” Lucious said. “I really want to break the school record, so I’m trying really hard. Sometimes I’m getting fouls, so I tell myself, ‘Hey, calm down.’ Usually I just read well and know when I can go for a block.”

Tori Rubel, who also leads Notre Dame in rebounds (7.9) and assists (3.1) on top of scoring, finished behind Lucious in blocks with a career-high three of her own, while leading the Bulldogs in rebounds (12) and assists (six) for the game. “When we get going, we can’t stop. I think when we pick each other up and cheer each other on, we keep going and push ourselves,” Lucious said.

Along with her eight points versus Cape, Brie Rubel finished as the game’s leader in steals at four and currently leads Notre Dame in the category with 2.9 per game and has hit a team-high 31 3s. Bulldogs 5-7 senior guard Anna Garner also scored eight points and hit two treys.

Nick McNeal covers high school sports, college sports and community events for The Cash-Book Journal. He graduated from Southeast Missouri State University with a degree in multimedia journalism and has lived in Cape Girardeau County for the past five years. He can be reached at cbjsports@socket. net.

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