It doesn't matter where she plays, Emily Stumpf just wants to play.
The senior for the Pierz Pioneers girls' basketball team, who plays point guard, is better suited as a shooting guard, but likes to play the low post. Wherever Stumpf plays, she's helped her team to 14-4 overall and 8-2 Central Minnesota Conference records.
In a 66-49 victory over Kimball, Stumpf had 23 points, five rebounds, five steals and three assists Feb. 5.
Stumpf collected 11 points, four steals and three assists Feb. 10, helping Pierz to a 51-42 triumph against Maple Lake.
She may be out of position, but as a captain her primary goal is to help her team succeed.
"She's accepted her role," said Pierz coach Rick Sczublew-ski. "She has had a great senior year. She realizes what she has to do for the team."
A four-year letterwinner and three-year starter, Stumpf is leading the Brainerd area with 15.5 points per game. She's also averaging 3.8 rebounds and has 48 steals and 32 assists.
"Her turnovers are down a lot from last year," said Sczublewski. "Her rebounding has picked up. She's shooting 36 percent from 3-point and 65 percent from the line. She's done a lot of good things. She's worked awfully hard and she's a motivated young lady."
Stumpf is satisfied with her play this season. She's happier that the team is winning. Her goals coming into the season were to be confident before every game.
Her first goal is for Pierz to win the Subsection 18, Section 6, Class 2A title and the section championship.
To do so she's improved her dribbling and defense. It's defense that she believes helps the Pioneers the most.
"I think my defense is my strength," said Stumpf. "I excel at that. I have good leadership on the court, which I think helps us play as a team."
Stumpf stopped there, saying she didn't want to brag about herself. Her coach couldn't stop bragging about her.
"She's a great athlete," said Sczublewski. "There's nothing she can't do when she puts her mind to it. She's a physically tough kid. She takes a lot of contact and she'll play herself to exhaustion. She's got a terrific heart."
The last few games Stumpf played a high post position because of an injury. She said she's loved it and would like to play there more.
"I actually like playing inside," said Stumpf. "I enjoyed it, but I like to play anywhere on the court."
When she's on the court Stumpf is one of the more consistent players. Sczublewski said that has been her biggest improvement.
"She doesn't have a game where she scores just three points," he said. "We've played tough teams and she's always in double figures. Her goal was to be a scorer and a leader. She's versatile. I expect her to do things every game. She has high expectations for herself. I feel that her maturity has come so far from her first couple of years. She's a totally different person."
Other notable performances:
Basketball -- Chelsa Schwegel, Pequot Lakes, scored 15 points against Bemidji, 10 against Pillager and 19 against Bemidji.
Andrea Helmrichs, W-DC, scored 18 points against Frazee.
Sarah Kallis, Little Falls, scored 18 points against Brainerd.
Chelsey Dabill, Pine River-Backus, scored 22 points against Verndale.
Becky Korf, Pierz, had 22 points and 10 rebounds against Kimball.
Ashley Kientzle, Lake Region Christian, scored 24 points against Woodcrest.
Gymnastics -- Shae Tabatt, Little Falls, won the bars, beam, vault, all-around against Prairie Center.
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