ELDON — The Cardinal girls basketball team opened the season at home testing themselves against Central Lee in a Southeast Iowa Super Conference south division showdown.
Central Lee opened up with an aggressive full-court press setting the tone for the game. The Hawks reeled off 12 consecutive points before the Comets got on the board on the way to a 57-17 win.
Sophomore Kinsey Hissem scored on a lay-up with 5:17 left in the first quarter, the first two points of the season for the Comets. Hissem, the leading scorer for Cardinal on the night with 11 points, would score all five of the points for the Comets in the first quarter, which ended with the Hawks owning an 18-5 lead.
"We knew we couldn't get into a running game with a team like Central Lee," Makenzie Ostrander said after opening her second season as head coach of the Cardinal girls basketball program.
The second quarter of play scoring was slightly more balanced as Central Lee (1-0, 1-0 SEI south) outscored the Comets 16-7. Clark University-bound Mya Merschman scored 14 points for the Hawks, including two goals beyond the 3-point arc. The 6-1 senior would finish the night with 30 points.
Trailing 36-12 to start the third quarter, the Comets were able to muster very little offense. Kolbie Bass scored the only Cardinal two points in the quarter on a lay-up late in the frame. The Comets trailed the Hawks 51-14 entering the final period of play.
In addition to leading Cardinal in scoring, Hissem was also the leading rebounder for the Comets grabbing seven boards.
"We need to work on ball pressure defensively, and do a better job of rebounding as we need second chance points." Ostrander said after the opening game for the Comets.
Cardinal (0-1, 0-1 SEI south) is next scheduled for the first road test of the season on Friday, Dec. 4. The Comets head to Fort Madison for an SEISC south contest at Holy Trinity.