Laker girls' basketball rally to advance to Section 8-3A finals
By BOB WILLIAMS Detroit Lakes Newspapers The Detroit Lakes girls' basketball team overcame a slow start before kicking their game into high gear in the second half running away from Sartell-St. Stephen 56-46 to advance to the Section 8-3A finals....
By BOB WILLIAMS
Detroit Lakes Newspapers
The Detroit Lakes girls' basketball team overcame a slow start before kicking their game into high gear in the second half running away from Sartell-St. Stephen 56-46 to advance to the Section 8-3A finals.
"We've been a second half team all year," DL Head Coach Mike Hoganson said. "We talked about playing with poise and confidence at halftime and they responded."
Sartell leading scorer Maggie Bryant led all scorers with 24 points, despite playing with a broken hand she injured in practice Wednesday.
"What a courageous performance," Hoganson said.
Averaging 20 points per game this season, it was obvious Bryant was going to get her points.
The Laker defense combated that by holding the remainder of the Sabres' offense, allowing points from only two other scorers.
The Lakers were near perfect from the free throw line, converting 23-27 opportunities and sealed the game from the line by scoring their last 11 points on foul shots.
"That was our Achilles heel early in the season," Hoganson said. "I've preached all year about how hard work pays off and it's great to see that happen."
The Sabres jumped out early to leads as large as eight before going into the locker room up four at half.
The Lakers tied the score one minute into the second half on a bucket by Alice Branden, before taking the lead on a momentum changing three-pointer by Abby Hoganson.
The lead changed hands five times to the 12 minute mark of the second half.
Abby Hoganson led the Lakers with 19 points, while Morgan Lof tallied 15 and Branden put up double digits scoring 11.
Three Lakers, Branden, Robin Hutchinson and Karin Norby played significant time with four fouls.
The Lakers advance to play another senior-laden team in Fergus Falls, led by high scoring Hannah Draxten. Fergus beat the Lakers earlier in the season, as had Sartell, but the Otters may be without senior Amanda Lewis, who left after being injured on the opening tip against Fergus Falls' semi-final win over Thief River Falls.
She did not return.
The section final between the Lakers and Otters is scheduled for Thursday, March 6, at 7 p.m. at MSU-Moorhead.
"We're going to have to come up with our best effort of the year," Hoganson said. "We're going to play hard and see what happens.
Sartell-St. Stephen vs. DL, at Alex Nemzek Hall, MSUM, Moorhead, MN Saturday March 1.
Sabres 25 - 21 - 46
Lakers 21 - 35 - 56
Scoring -- DL: Hoganson 19. Lof 15, Branden 11, Labine 7, Hutchinson 2, Thompson 2
S-S: Bryant 26, Schellinger 14, Flynn 6