The Moose Lake Willow River Lady Rebels had another two win week. They took on Carlton and Two Harbors
On Tuesday, February 4, the Lady Rebels traveled to Carlton. Alivia Mallory started out the Rebel scoring with a reverse jumper for two. Carlton tied the game with their possession and then hit two free throws to put them in the lead. The Rebels and Bulldogs traded leads until Carlton tied up the game at 17. Grace Stephenson picked up a loose ball off of a bulldog turnover which eventually led to a three point play by Emily Bohnsack. The scoring between the two teams traded hands multiple times. Carlton extended their lead to 5 points, but MLWR came back to tie the game at 33 off a 3-pointer by Alivia Mallory but the Bulldogs ended the half with a 40-35 lead.
As the second half started, Carlton extended their lead to 8 points, but the Lady Rebels came clawing back into the game. Monica Mikrot hit two consecutive three point shots to bring the Bulldog lead down to two. A strong defensive effort by the Rebels forced a Bulldog turnover that led to a Skyla Thompson layup to tie the game at 53. Bulldog free throw shooting allowed them to retake the lead only to have Natalie Mikrot steal the ball on an errant Carlton pass and take it all the way down the court for a layup. Carlton re-took the lead at 65-59 off of second attempts and free throws. Emily Bohnsack backed into two defensive players and completed a nice spin move to bring the score to 71-70 Bulldogs. Skyla Thompson stole the ball as the Bulldogs brought it up the court and took it in for a layup to put the Rebels up 72-71. Carlton re-took the lead 73-72, but Emily Bohnsack was able to go 2/2 at the free throw line to put the Rebels back on top 74-73. On the Bulldog end of the court, the Rebels had another tough defensive stance and kept Carlton from scoring. Skyla Thompson had another steal that led to a layup. The Rebels finished off the Bulldogs at the free throw line going 7-10 in the last 50 seconds of the game. Rebels won 83—76.
Alivia Mallory led Rebel scoring with 24 points, Maci Kukuk 14, Natalie Mikrot 12, Skyla Thompson 11, Monica Mikrot 10, Emily Bohnsack 8, and Sarah Christy 4.
“This was a great game,” said Coach Judd. “Very intense with a lot of ups and downs for both teams. Felt very much like a playoff game. I was happy with the way our girls continue to battle each game and they never quit fighting. We were happy to come away with a victory. Very proud of our girls’ efforts. We shot the ball well tonight and got stops when we needed to down the stretch.”
Two Harbors came to town on Thursday, February 6. It took a bit for the Rebels to get going but when they did, the girls rattled off 10 straight points. The Agates added 4 points of their own before Natalie Mikrot hit a three to make the score 13-6. Ella Rhoades put in 4 more points that Two Harbors matched. The Rebels took a 33-19 lead into the locker room at half time.
At the start of the half, the Rebels went on a 12-0 run but their shooting then went cold, allowing the Agates to start a run of their own. Ella Rhoades ended the Rebel cold spell by hitting a short jumper but that would be the only field goal the Rebels would get the rest of the game. The Agate defense effectively shut down the Rebels scoring in the second half. MLWR was only able to add a couple of free throws at the end of the game. However, the Rebels still took the win 54-42.
Maci Kukuk was the high scorer for the Rebels with 15, Natalie Mikrot added 13, Ella Rhoades 10, Monica Mikrot 7, Grace Stephenson 4, Skyla Thompson 2, Emily Bohnsack 2, and Sarah Christy 1.
“It was a nice team win for us,” said Coach Judd. “We played our best defense so far this year and did a nice job forcing turnovers. Unfortunately we had our share of turnovers too. Just like any game in basketball, you can find areas we did well and areas we need to improve on. The girls have now won 6 in a row and we have a huge game next Tuesday against Crosby-Ironton. This is what it is all about when you hit this time of year. Playing playoff-like basketball games and getting a chance to see how we handle intense situations. We will see if we are up for the challenge.”