COLFAX — After taking care of business in the regional semi-final game with a 59-37 over the Stanley-Boyd Orioles March 1 in their home gym, the Colfax girls made sure the string of tournament losses to the Eau Claire Regis Ramblers was over as they steam rolled them 54-31 just 24 hours later in the same place.
It was a healthy team with a lot of energy that showed up to play for the Vikings in the semi-final game. With several of the girls battling a virus the past few weeks, it didn’t take long to show they had recovered. Ryleigh Prochnow hit a bucket and Braanna Steen canned a three ball for a 5-0 lead and after the Oriole’s hot shooter Halie Milas hit a trey of her own, Mallie Doucette went on an eight point run in a span of 30 seconds when she scored from under the hoop and added a free throw, canned a triple seven seconds later after a Colfax steal, then hit from the paint after another Vikings steal for a 13-3 Colfax lead. S-B got back into the game on a couple of deuces but Colfax was up 15-7 at the end of the first quarter.
The Vikings were clicking on both sides of the ball as they forced the Orioles to take several off balance shots that were off the mark while Colfax just kept adding points to the scoreboard, increasing their lead to 25-12 at the half. Steen and Hannah Hover both knocked down three balls early in the third stanza with Prochnow adding a layup off a steal in between and the Vikings went up 35-12. Prochnow came up with five straight points on a deuce and a triple and Chey Olson put down a buzzer beater trey to put her team up 47-19 heading into the final quarter.
Team depth continues to be a strong point for Colfax as Brittany Rothbauer scored from underneath then drained a three ball and McKayla Harmon scored on a baseline drive and a short jumper to finish off the game,
“We were anxious to play after eight days off,” coach Joe Doucette said. “We knew we were going to come out with a lot of energy and we were ready to play. S-B was very physical but we moved the ball very well. We had a lot of assists and played very unselfishly. We had only three turnovers until late in the game.It was a great win and we just keep looking at one game at a time,” he added.
Balanced scoring was a key for the Vikings as Doucette finished with 12 points, Prochnow and Steen added 11 each and Olson had a season high nine.
COLFAX (59) Doucette 5-1-2-12, Prochnow 5-0-0-11, Steen 4-0-0-11, Olson 4-0-0-9, Rothbauer 2-0-0-5, Harmon 2-0-0-4, Hover 1-0-0-3, D. Dachel 1-0-0-2, T. Shipman 0-2-4-2
STANLEY-BOYD (37) Milas 5-0-0-13, A. Hazuga 4-0-0-8, J. Reit 3-1-2-7, A. Lisiecki 3-1-4-7, J. Hoffstatter 1-0-0-2
THREE POINTERS: Steen 3, Milas 3, Doucette 1, Hover 1, Prochnow 1, Olson 1, Rothbauer 1
Eau Claire Regis
“FINALLY” – these were the words most often heard among the Colfax fans when the game against the Ramblers ended. Although they had beaten the Ramblers by 14 points earlier this year, for the past three years the Lady Vikes saw their season end with losses to Regis, last year in the sectional semi-final and the two years before that in regional finals. Although they are quite a different team this year without a certain six foot blonde dominating the paint, the Ramblers won the Western Cloverbelt Conference with a 12-2 record and were 15-8 overall. Those numbers didn’t faze the Colfax girls however, and to say they jumped out to an early lead would be one of the biggest understatements in the history of high school basketball.
The Vikings scored the first 21 points of the game and after the Ramblers put down a free throw with 1:23 to go in the first quarter, Colfax added five more points for a 26-1 lead. Hover got the ball rolling with a steal and a layup and after a Steen underhand scoop shot, Hover hit the first of five treys for the team in the quarter. Steen hit the second one, Dannielle Dachel the third, Steen was fouled on a three point attempt and hit all three freebies, and Doucette scored from the lane. Someone forgot to keep an eye on Steen and she knocked down two more treys from the corner, the final one on a cross court pass from Dachel, then she added a deuce for her 16th point of the quarter. The Vikings were 5 for 5 from behind the arc in the quarter and Dachel had four assists and Hover swiped the ball from the Ramblers four times.
Regis actually outscored the Vikings in the second and third quarters but not enough to overcome the huge Colfax lead. After holding a 33-13 halftime lead, Colfax had a little trouble against the Ramblers full court press allowing Regis to open the third quarter with a four point run. Steen took over again though, hitting a free throw, a shot from close range and another three ball after one was called back due to a foul, and Colfax was up 39-22. Doucette added a pair of free tosses, then after getting decked by a Regis player, came right back to the line and hit two more, putting her team up 43-24 heading into the final eight minutes.
Doucette added two more deuces on drives through the lane and with Colfax shooting bonus free throws, Hover hit one of two twice, Steen did the same and Prochnow, Rothbauer and Alexis Rudi all went to the line one time and hit one of two to finish off the win that had been decided long ago.
“I knew we were ready to play but I never expected the start we had,” coach Doucette said. “Everything went our way early against a very good team. We fought some foul trouble but our ability to defend and reload against a bigger team was a key for us. Everyone helped and contributed for us again.”
Steen was unstoppable from all over and ended the game with a season high 24 points with four treys and 6 of 9 free throws. Doucette added 14 points and was 4 of 4 from the stripe. The team finished 16 for 27 from the foul line and shot 48% from the field, including 64% in the first quarter. Colfax now moves on to face Cameron at Amery Thursday, March 7 at 7:00.
COLFAX (54) Steen 7-6-9-24, Doucette 5-4-4-14, Hover 2-2-4-7, Prochnow 1-1-2-3, Dachel 1-0-0-3, Rudi 0-1-3-1, Shipman 0-1-2-1, Rothbauer 0-1-2-1
REGIS (31) Haley Gibbons 2-6-7-10, C. Tuura 3-2-2-8, S. Brey 1-2-2-4, R. Liming 0-2-2-2. N. Bachmeier1-0-0-2, K. Mathiowetz1-0-0-2, Hannah Gibbons 0-2-2-2
THREE POINTERS: Steen 4, Hover 1, Dachel 1