By Tera White
A four-game winning streak has come to an end for the Mound Westonka High School girls basketball team with a couple of difficult losses. The White Hawks missed senior co-captain Claire White’s scoring, as she was out this week with an ankle injury. However, other players stepped up their games in her absence.
At Glencoe-Silver Lake on Jan. 24, sophomore Ela Springer scored a career-high 13 points behind sophomore Jennifer Schaible with 17 points. Additional points were put up by juniors Mackenzie Anderson (6) and Sam Eidsness (3) and ninth-grader Melissa Drill (4). The White Hawks crashed the boards with 27 rebounds, led by Drill with six boards and followed by sophomore Maya Thurston and senior co-captain Ryann Beyer with five each. Beyer also led with five assists. Sophomore Abigail Wharram had three assists and was active on defense with three blocks and two steals. Despite the team’s efforts, they were not able to shut down the GSL offense, losing 71-47.
Back at home on Jan. 27, the White Hawks played a closer game against Annandale. Beyer hit a 3-pointer to put the first points on the board for the game. Westonka came back from an 11-point deficit to get the game within three points with 11 seconds left in the half. Unfortunately, a couple of quick baskets in the final seconds sent Westonka to the locker room down 21-14 at half.
In the second half, the home team allowed the Cardinals a 10-point run in 3 minutes. A JV squad came in with two and a half minutes left in the game, and the White Hawks held the Cardinals scoreless for the last five minutes of play. Ninth-grader Chloe Kantola hit her first varsity basket for two points to close the game, losing 47-33.
Schaible once again led the team with 11 points, followed by Thurston with four and Beyer with three. Scoring two points each (in addition to Kantola) were Wharram, Eidsness and sophomore Melissa Christlieb. Schaible and Thurston both had six boards each. Wharram hit teammates for three assists, and both Wharram and Schaible tied with four steals a piece.
The conference season will wrap up in February, and you can see the White Hawks at home Feb. 9 vs. Dassel-Cokato, Feb. 14 vs. New London-Spicer and Feb. 20 for a Senior Night rematch with Glencoe-Silver Lake. Plan to come and support the team!
Coach Alan Hiebert’s corner: Glencoe has a very talented back court that’s giving everyone in the Wright County Conference difficulty, and we were no exception. We came out a little flat to start the game and, despite some stretches of competitive basketball, we were never able to close the gap in a significant way. Against Annandale we just shot the ball poorly. We beat them in just about every other statistical category, but when shots don’t fall, it’s tough to win. We took good shots, we just missed.