Section 3A girls basketball: No big surprises on Super Saturday
Southwest Minnesota Christian, Tracy-Milroy-Balaton, Westbrook-Walnut Grove and Edgerton win quarterfinal games
WORTHINGTON — There were no surprises in the quarterfinal round of the Section 3A girls basketball tournament on Super Saturday at Worthington High School. And in three of the games, fast starts led to routs.
Southwest Minnesota Christian rolled over Murray County Central 73-30 in the first game, followed by a 53-39 victory by Tracy-Milroy-Balaton over Hills-Beaver Creek, Westbrook-Walnut Grove’s 46-29 win over Adrian/Ellsworth and Edgerton’s 64-23 triumph over Red Rock Central.
Semifinal games are Tuesday, with Southwest Christian playing T-M-B and W-WG playing Edgerton. The location for both games was originally scheduled for Worthington, but one or both games may be moved due to a Worthington boys basketball game with New Ulm which may be placed in Worthington.
SW Christian 73, MCC 30
The top-seeded Eagles scored the game’s first 11 points and never looked back en route to a convincing victory.
Sophomore forward Madyson Fey and junior forward Jocelyn Barron combined for 21 points in the first half as talented Southwest Minnesota Christian opened up a huge lead. The margin was 46-14 at halftime and the Eagles, who improved to 21-5 on the season, cruised in the second half. Fey, Barron and playmaking junior guard Ana Veldkamp each finished with 14 points. Makenna Moss had seven points and seven rebounds, while Kinsie Nelson drilled two of the Eagles nine 3-pointers.
Southwest Christian shot 9-for-17 from 3-point range and its outstanding defensive pressure helped force 27 MCC turnovers.
Murray County Central, which defeated Heron Lake-Okabena/Fulda in a tourney pigtail game on Friday night and then about 14 hours later tipped off against the Eagles, played much better in the second half and early in the stanza rattled off 10 straight points. The eighth-seeded Rebels (6-17), who lost standout senior Seanna Swenson to an ankle injury last week, received nine points from senior guard Casey Miller. She made three of MCC’s four 3-pointers. The Rebels finished just 4-for-21 from beyond the arc.
Senior forward Zoey Iverson and junior guard Abby Overman each had seven points and five rebounds, while hustling sophomore Thea Schneider finished with five points and a team-high nine boards. Iverson also had several steals.
Southwest Minnesota Christian, which dropped is first three games of the season and at one point was just 2-4, won its eighth straight game. The Eagles of coach Luke Drooger also had a 12-game winning streak earlier in the campaign.
Murray County Central 14 30
Southwest Minnesota Christian 46 73
T-M-B 53, H-B-C 39
Sophomore guard Kyli Carter led a balanced attack with 11 points as fourth-seeded Tracy-Milroy-Balaton knocked off fifth-seeded Hills-Beaver Creek.
Star senior guard Jordan Munson had eight points, seven rebounds and several assists for the Panthers, who improved to 15-11.
Senior guard Grace Dolan scored 10, while Jaelynn Carter and Hailey Gernentz contributed eight apiece.
Eighth-grade forward Olivia Deelstra led Hills- Beaver Creek (12-15) with 15 points and seven rebounds. Lanae Elbers, a 6-2 junior center, had nine points, eight boards and several blocks.
The Patriots led 18-17 with five minutes to play in the first half following a Deelstra putback. But the cat-quick Munson slashed to the hoop for two, then Gernentz swished a 3-pointer. Moments later Munson’s excellent pass to a wide-open Dolan resulted in a 3-pointer and the Panthers were on their way to an 11-1 run.
Leading by eight at halftime, T-M-B got more exceptional play from Munson and Co. early in the second half. Emma Edwards scored inside off a Munson feed, then Munson converted a conventional three-point play. Moments later Dolan swished a baseline runner and the T-M-B lead was 15.
Layla Deelstra, a junior guard and one of three Deelstra sisters who play significant minutes for the Patriots, finished with nine points and nine rebounds.
Hills-Beaver Creek 22 39
Tracy-Milroy-Balaton 30 53
W-WG 46, Adrian/Ellsworth 29
Westbrook-Walnut Grove moved to a 10-0 lead over the Dragons, and it wasn’t until four and a half minutes elapsed that A/E scored its first point. Actually, the Chargers weren’t consistent, either, for much of the first half. But they converted six 3-point shots before they went into halftime with a 26-8 advantage.
Izzy Klumper hit her third 3-pointer of the game early in the second half, followed by Addeson Jenniges’ third 3-pointer, and the Chargers were firmly in control. The seventh-seeded Dragons played with better offensive rhythm later in the game, pulling to within 34-20 on a short Claire Popkes jumper, but W-WG coasted the rest of the way.
W-WG is 18-7 on the season.
The Chargers move well around the court together, they pass well, and they box out very well on the boards.
“One of the things we really emphasize is to take care of the basketball. We feel that if we really value the ball, we’re going to get some good percentage shots,” said coach Dan Klumper.
W-WG, the No. 2 South seed, handled A/E’s zone defense with patience and dexterity. Izzy, the daughter of the husband-and-wife coaching team of Dan and Abby, led the Chargers with 19 points. Jenniges had nine points and so did Abby Wiggins.
With no seniors on the Westbrook-Walnut Grove roster, Dan Klumper said no matter how far his team travels this winter, next year will be promising as well.
“So we have the same exact roster coming back next year. So we’ve got a chance to keep the same thing going,” said the coach.
Sadie Krahling and Maddie Wagner had seven points each for A/E, and Brylee Zebe scored six.
W-WG 26 46
A/E 8 29
Edgerton 64, RRC 23
Third-seeded Edgerton Public kept sixth-seeded Red Rock Central from ever mounting a threat.
The Flying Dutchmen soared off the opening tip as their outstanding 6-foot junior forward Alyda Vande Griend scored six of the first eight points, which included a 10-foot shot made while she was falling forward onto the floor. Edgerton led 19-0 before Red Rock Central finally got on the scoreboard with a pair of free throws by Alyssa Cowan with 10:17 remaining till the half.
The score was 25-2 when a flustered Falcons team took a much-needed time-out with 6:57 to go, but back on the court the Edgerton lead only increased to 33-2.
Leading 46-10 at halftime, the Dutchmen scored the first eight points of the second half. A Reilly Hubin 3-pointer finally got the Falcons’ already-minimal fortunes started with under 12 minutes left, but the Dutch remained dominant.
Vande Griend is a player who’s dangerous on both ends of the court. She shoots well anywhere from 12 feet to closer, she rebounds well and she passes well, and she can dribble and see the whole court.
She finished with 16 points. Freshman Reese Vande Griend added nine points as did Kya Voge. Mateya Gilbertson scored seven. Savannah Schultz and Elliott Fleischmann had six apiece.
Sondra Rindfleisch tallied nine points to lead RRC.
Edgerton 46 64
RRC 10 23