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MW BASKETBALL: Lady Jays clinch post-season berth

WILLMAR -- The Minnesota West Lady Jays clinched a postseason berth with a 65-50 win over the Ridgewater Warriors during a MCAC Southern Division womens' basketball game Saturday.

"We played really good defense against Ridgewater," MW coach Mike Fury said. "It was tied early in the first half, but then we went on a run and continued to stretch the lead in the second half to finish out the game."

With the game tied at 10 apiece, the Lady Jays went on a 10-0 run to make it 20-10 and only allowed the Warriors to score 10 more points in the half. Minnesota West closed out the half leading 36-20.

"We hit a couple of shots and played some good defense during that 10-0 run," Fury said. "I was really happy with the girls' defense and how they only allowed the Warriors to score 10 points after that big run."

Ridgewater outscored Minnesota West 30-29 in the second half, but the Lady Jays were able to hold on to their early lead for the win.

"The first 5 to 8 minutes of the second half was where we were able to open up the game more," Fury said. "They were able to make a few runs at us, but we hit some free throws down the stretch to keep our lead."

Tiffany Gehl led the Lady Jays with 25 points on the night, while Lindsey Drooger added 21 points, eight rebounds and two steals. Katey Granstra had a team-high 15 rebounds to go along with four blocks. Katherine Kazemba had seven rebounds and six points, and Brittany Hulstein led the team in assists with three.

The Warriors were led by Lynsey Runke, who had 17 points, while Raeann Sorenson added nine points.

Minnesota West (16-6, 7-2) hosts Anoka-Ramsey Wednesday in the first game of a men's/women's doubleheader.

Lady Jays 36 29 -- 65

Warriors 20 30 -- 50


Bluejays 80,

Warriors 70

WILLMAR -- Cody Harris dropped 22 points to go along with six rebounds for the Minnesota West Bluejays in a win over the Ridgewater Warriors during a MCAC Southern Division men's' basketball game Saturday.

"Offensively, we were able to move the ball around well as well as attack the basket aggressively," MW coach Justin Heckenlaible said. "We got to the free-throw line a lot while keeping the Warriors out of the lane on our end without fouling."

The Bluejays led 43-29 after the first half by limiting the Warriors 3-point shooting to just 1 of 13 from beyond the arc in the first half.

"We did a nice job of defending their guys at the 3-point line," Heckenlaible said. "Their shooters weren't able to get much going from behind the arc and shot just 6 of 27 all game."

Luke Roddy and Mitch Hopkins had 10 points apiece for Minnesota West, while Roddy added five assists and Hopkins pulled down six rebounds. Jackson Seitzinger picked up nine points and six rebounds to go along with nine points from Mitch Olsen.

With the win over the Warriors, the Bluejays (12-10, 5-5) sweep the season series and own the playoff tie-breaker over Ridgewater. Minnesota West is also tied with Riverland for third place in the Southern Division.

Bluejays 43 37 -- 80

Warriors 29 41 -- 70