PREP GIRLS' BASKETBALL: Flying Dutchmen can’t hold off Rabbits, as Edgerton falls to Wabasso 64-59WORTHINGTON — The Tomahawk Conference champion Wabasso Rabbits rallied late in the first half from an eight-point deficit and — after trailing by nine points with less than seven minutes left in the game — surged again, claiming a 64-59 victory over Edgerton in the second game of “Super Saturday’s” quarterfinal round of the Section 3A South high school girls’ basketball tournament.
By: Les Knutson, Worthington Daily Globe
WORTHINGTON — The Tomahawk Conference champion Wabasso Rabbits rallied late in the first half from an eight-point deficit and — after trailing by nine points with less than seven minutes left in the game — surged again, claiming a 64-59 victory over Edgerton in the second game of “Super Saturday’s” quarterfinal round of the Section 3A South high school girls’ basketball tournament.
The ever-pressing Rabbits, who went 15-1 to win the Tomahawk and had a 14-game winning streak during the season, are an impressive 22-4 overall this winter.
Wabasso, the tournament’s No. 4 seed, scored 32 points in each half Saturday, as Chelsey Guetter — a smooth-moving 5-11 sophomore post player — netted 14 points before intermission and tallied 14 more after the break.
Fifth-seeded Edgerton, which surged with a 14-2 run late in the first half to turn a 22-18 deficit into a 32-24 lead, finishes a fine season with an overall record of 14-10.
“We played pretty well,” summed up EHS head coach Andrew Fleischman. “Our two seniors — Breana Van Dyke and Lindsey Drooger — both finished with good all-around games and our team, as a whole, played hard and we had our chances.
“We were able to build a couple of nice leads in each half, but we had too many mistakes against a team as good as Wabasso. But, I was proud of our effort and how this team improved as the season progressed. We were a better team in February than we were in December.”
After a trio of early lead changes and five tie scores, the quick-footed Rabbits opened up a 22-18 lead with seven minutes remaining in the first half.
But, then the Flying Dutchmen struck.
Beginning with a 3-pointer by Sarah Post (12 points, six rebounds, three assists), Fleischman’s squad began an impressive run which built their first eight-point lead.
A rebound basket by 5-1 junior guard Amanda Schaap brought EHS to within one point and then the Dutchmen took the lead when Drooger scored underneath off an assist from Tara DeKam (six rebounds).
That one-point edge quickly became 28-24 when Droooger (16 points, 14 rebounds, four blocks, four steals, three assists) fired in a deep 3-pointer from the left corner
A shot from the opposite side by DeKam and a putback bucket by freshman center Tanner Gunnink (eight points, five rebounds) capped the burst and gave the Dutchmen a 32-24 lead with 1:58 on the first-half clock.
Wabasso, however, quickly responded as Kimberly Frank (12 points, 11 steals) drilled a 3-pointer, which was immediately answered by Post’s second trey of the half.
With Edgerton leading 35-27, Wabasso’s Desirae Kramer (nine points, seven rebounds, five steals) converted a three-point play after securing an offensive rebound. Frank quickly converted a steal into a layup, slicing the lead to 35-32.
Drooger (assist Gunnink) scored just before the buzzer, sending the Dutchmen into intermission with a five-point lead, 37-32.
Edgerton claims 56-47 lead with 7:00 to play
After a slow start — scoring-wise — to the second half, the pace picked up and Edgerton continued to maintain a lead.
A jumper by Wabasso’s Ellen Franta (nine points, seven rebounds, six steals, four assists) brought the Rabbits to within one, 39-38, with just under 12 minutes to play.
But a strong drive by Drooger and a timely 3-pointer by Ciara Everett lifted the Dutchmen back up six, 44-38, a minute later.
Several stellar defensive plays by the hard-working Jessica Menning (eight points, six rebounds, four steals, three assists), a beautiful high-low feed from Drooger to Van Dyke (six points, eight rebounds) and a pair of free throws by Everett helped Edgerton to a 50-46 advantage with just over eight minutes left.
The Dutchmen went up by eight points 30 seconds later, as Gunnink scored twice — the first time off a perfect pass from Drooger and the second on a putback after an offensive rebound.
After a free throw by Guetter (28 points, 12 rebounds, three assists, 14-of-19 at the line), Edgerton claimed its largest lead, 56-47, after Gunnink scored inside again (assist Menning).
But, the Rabbits who came up with 25 steals in the game and forced a total of 40 Edgerton turnovers, rallied with a 17-3 run over the game’s final six minutes and 40 seconds.
Two more free throws by Guetter, a 3-pointer by Frank (assist Guetter), a fastbreak basket by Karlee Eichten (assist Franta) and two free throws by Franta tied the score at 56-56 with 4:43 left.
A free throw by Guetter and her later inside hoop gave the Rabbits a three-point edge. Menning (assist Post) countered for the Dutchmen, closing Wabasso’s lead to 59-58.
But at the 1:51 mark, Guetter sank two more free throws, and then scored off a second-effort chance underneath, lifting the Rabbits up by five, 63-58, with a minute left.
Franta and Menning each made a free throw in the game’s final minute, as the Rabbits held on for the come-from-behind victory.
“We survived,” summed up Wabasso head coach Neil Dolan. “Edgerton’s a good team, which plays solid defense and handled our press pretty well, breaking it for baskets several times. But, we stuck with our press, getting some steals and scoring often enough to come back and win the game.”
Edgerton 37 22 — 59
Wabasso 32 32 — 64
Edgerton (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) Schaap 0-1-0-2, Menning 1-2-1-8, Post 2-3-0-12, Droooger 1-5-3-16, Van Dyke 0-2-2-6, DeKam 0-1-0-2, Everett 1-0-2-5, Gunnink 0-4-0-8. Totals 5-18-8-59.
Wabasso (3FG-2FG-FT-TP) Rohlik 0-2-0-4, Kramer 0-4-1-9, Liebl 0-1-0-2, Frank 2-3-0-12, Franta 0-2-5-9, Guetter 0-7-14-28. Totals 2-19-20-64.