Freland passes 1,000 in Mustang win

by Gunnar Davis

Another Heart of Iowa Conference win was what the PCM Mustangs girls’ basketball team needed to stay in the conference title race. They got that win against the CMB Raiders on Jan. 27 at home, 52-31.
Earlier in the season, these two teams met, and the Mustangs won by 30, but they weren’t going to take the Raiders lightly this time around. PCM couldn’t get things started on offense in the first quarter, only scoring five points, compared to the Raiders’ eight.
“We came out sluggish,” Head Coach Bret Grier said. “We can’t afford to do that because the best teams are going to beat us. We were behind 8-5 after the first quarter, and if that happens in district play, it could mean an early exit.”
But in the second and third quarter, the Mustangs pulled away big time against the Raiders. Grier was happy with how his team responded and how they kept the lead throughout the fourth quarter.
“Getting this win meant we stayed tied for the lead with Nevada for first place,” Grier said. “We have some very big games to finish up the regular season to find out who will win the conference.”
Senior Rachel Freland led the team with 19 points and seven steals. Senior Courtney Van Houweling also added 12 points, seven rebounds and five assists.
Coming into the game, Freland needed only one point to reach the 1,000-career-point mark. She hit a three in the first quarter, and the crowd went nuts. A great athlete in not only basketball, but in softball, her coach raves about her off the field, too.
“To me, it is what she does in practice and off the court,” Grier said. “What the public doesn’t get to see. She is a very good leader. She communicates well with everyone on the team. She always seems to have something positive to say to someone in practice after a miscue. She has a real passion for learning and is very faith based. That is probably what makes her a success in whatever she does.”
The Mustangs’ next game is at Nevada on Friday, Feb. 6, against the Cubs, starting at 6 p.m.