NOKOMIS — Lizzy Gruber notched her 1,000th career rebound and moved within striking distance of 1,000 career points Tuesday as the Gardiner girls basketball team defeated Nokomis 61-55.

Gruber, needing 17 rebounds to reach the milestone, finished with 18 on the night and added a game-high 39 points for Gardiner to reach 990 for her career. She can reach the 1,000-point milestone Thursday when the Tigers face Morse in Bath.

“It’s not something a lot of people keep track of because it’s not even in the picture for a lot of people, so to be able to do it feels great,” Gruber said. “I have an amazing team that backs me up every night, and I owe it all to them.”

Gruber dominated the first quarter with 12 points and six rebounds as Gardiner (8-0) ended the period on a 9-2 run to go up 16-11 entering the second. The Warriors then went on an 8-0 run to take a 19-18 lead behind 3-pointers from Raegan King and Brianna Townsend and a layup from Cam King.

Nokomis (4-4) would hold a lead for most of the second quarter but never quite pushed its advantage beyond a single possession. Gardiner then took advantage with Gruber scoring the last two baskets of the half to take a 28-25 lead and continuing her scoring burst early into the third quarter to put the Tigers up 36-28.

With Gardiner leading 36-31 midway through the third, the Tigers got back-to-back 3-pointers from Emily Grady and Gruber to take a double-digit lead for the first time. Cam King added 11 points in the fourth for Nokomis as the visitors had to fight for the win in a tough environment.

“They shoot the ball so well in their own gym, and we knew we had to keep pushing because they can score it fast,” said Gardiner head coach Mike Gray. “We went into the last minute having our starters still out (on the floor). It was great for us to have to fight and battle through something like that and earn the win.”

In addition to Gruber’s performance, Gardiner got a strong effort from Taylor Takatsu defensively as the junior pulled down nine rebounds and recorded a game-high five steals. Megan Gallagher added eight points, three rebounds and one steal for the Tigers.

Cam King had a team-high 17 points for Nokomis and added four rebounds. The Warriors also got 12 points, three rebounds and two steals from Townsend, 11 points and five rebounds from Raegan King and 11 points from Suhaily Fernández.

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