SIREN – Unfortunately for a majority of teams in the Lakeland West, wins are being traded only among those chasing the conference leader.
With the St. Croix Falls girls basketball team rolling through its first 13 games with an undefeated record, the remaining teams continued falling further behind battling each other through the first few months of the season.
But the situation has presented Siren with an improved chance to climb the standings and remain within reach of second place, an effort that was helped by a conference win over Frederic last week. The Dragons had four players reach double-digit point totals in a 61-42 win over the Vikings on Jan. 21.
Siren trailed for much of the first half with Frederic’s Kennady Alseth scoring eight of her game-high 21 points in the first 10 minutes of the game. One of her 3-pointers erased Siren’s first lead and put the Vikings up 13-12.
The Dragons responded with a 12-2 run to close the half, led by six points from Lindsay Liljenberg.
Siren built the lead to 32-20 early in the second half and later stretched its lead to 19 points with six consecutive points from Liljenberg. Her points started a 10-0 run that eventually gave the Dragons a 49-28 lead.
They were able to cruise until the end for their third conference win of the season.
Liljenberg led the Dragons with 16 points; Jaidyn Jewell had 15; Morgan Shetler had 11 and Hannah Lemieux added 10. It was their second consecutive win, though Unity stopped the streak on Friday.
Siren’s effort to potentially elevate in the standings was paused by the Eagles, who entered the game second in the conference, in a 93-28 rout over the Dragons. Raegan Sorensen scored a game-high 26 points for Unity, including four 3-pointers, leading four double-digit scorers on the team.
The Dragons fell to 3-5 in the conference, putting them fourth entering the week, while their overall record dropped to 9-5. They host Grantsburg this Friday and play at Webster on Tuesday.
An impressive single-game performance was followed by a matchup with an impressive opponent last week for the Pirates.
Brooke Quimby led Grantsburg with 20 points, 19 rebounds and 10 steals in a 59-45 win over Webster on Jan. 21. Olivia Ohnstad added 18 points and eight rebounds to help the Pirates counter the Tigers’ long-range shooting.
Hannah McDowell led Webster with 15 points, all coming from 3-point range. While teammates added three more 3-pointers for the Tigers in the game, the Pirates limited them to a 17-for-73 performance overall from the floor.
“We played a terrific game with wonderful team effort,” Grantsburg coach Penny Curtin said. “It was a great win.”
Madison Schafer and McKenzie Hicks added nine points each for Grantsburg; Grace McCool had 10 points for Webster and Jenna Gomulak had seven.
But on Friday, the Pirates faced that impressive opponent – St. Croix Falls – in a 73-37 loss at home. The Saints scored 53 first-half points and had 10 players with at least one basket in the game.
“(St. Croix Falls) is a fabulous team that had very little trouble with us,” Curtin said.
Quimby again led the Pirates, this time with 19 points; Olivia Miron led the Saints with 19 points.
Grantsburg entered the week with a 2-5 conference record and was 6-7 overall. The Pirates play at Siren this Friday and hosts Luck on Tuesday.
The Tigers followed their loss to Grantsburg on Jan. 21 with a close 39-38 win over Lac Courte Oreilles at home on Friday.
Jenna Gomulak and Hannah McDowell had 11 points each for the Tigers; McDowell had all three of the team’s 3-pointers while the rest of the team went 0-for-17 from long range. Brooke Hetfeld added seven points and eight rebounds.
Webster improved to 3-10 overall and was 1-5 in the conference. The Tigers play at St. Croix Falls on Friday and host Siren on Tuesday.