Colfax girls come from behind in win over Durand, blow past Boyceville
With a 53 conference game winning streak on the line, the Lady Vikings pulled themselves together partway though the second half to take a hard earned 65-60 win at home over Durand Dec. 8, then kept their streak intact with a 58-23 blasting of Boyceville in a Friday night game three days later.
The Panthers are the new kids on the block, moving into the Dunn-St. Croix Conference after winning the Middle Border a year ago at 14-0. They ended the season with a one point loss to Hayward in the sectional final but they lost six players through graduation including leading scorer Morganne Gruber who averaged 19 points a game. But they have plenty of replacements and have been picked by several area coaches to be a contender for the D-SC title this year.
With several freshmen spending a lot of time on the court so far this season for Colfax, nobody was sure what to expect when both teams started the game. Both teams had several short scoring runs in the first half but both teams also used very aggressive defenses which didn’t allow either team to lead by more than six points. Colfax was the team that had that advantage when they were up 11-5 on a long deuce from Emma Hurlburt, a layup from Dempsey Fogarty off a full court in-bounds pass, a triple by Alyssa Dachel, a pair of Fogarty free tosses, a Hurlburt trey and free throw. Durand took a 13-11 lead however before Fogarty scored on a layup from another long pass. The Panthers pulled ahead 17-13 before Fogarty, who had been sitting out earlier with a pair of fouls, scored from underneath and after Bryanna Buchanan hit two free throws it was knotted at 19-19. Buchanan drove to the hoop on the Vikings’ next possession for a bucket and Hurlburt canned another trey for a 24-21 Colfax lead. But after a Ally Heidorn free toss, the Vikings had problems against the Panthers press and eight empty possession allowing Durand to tie things up at 25 all heading into the locker room.
Durand went on one of those short runs early in the second half to pull ahead 35-30 and upped the lead to 41-33 before Buchanan drilled a triple and Hurlburt took a pass from Fogarty to get Colfax closer down 41-38. But they couldn’t quite get over the hump and when the Panthers went up 51-42 with around seven minutes left, it looked like the Vikings had just run out of gas.
Then the mindset of “Not in Our House” kicked in as the Colfax girls decided their conference streak was NOT going to end in their own gym in front of all the home town crowd. They restarted their engines with help from Megan Schleusner’s first and only points of the game, a three ball on a bank shot no less, followed by a Savanna Henricks deuce and a Heidorn trey and with 5:05 left, Colfax was down 51-50. But not for long as Heidorn drove to the hoop for two points and a one point lead and Henricks scored on a long deuce. The Panthers tied the game on a triple of their own at 54-54 and in less than a minute it was 57-57 after they traded three point shots again as Buchanan took a dish from Fogarty and hit. After Henricks scored her 13th point of the half on a drive down the lane for a 59-57 advantage, the Vikings forced a Panther turnover and ran some time off the clock. Buchanan found an opening and scored in the lane, then her free toss and three more by Fogarty finished the game off.
“I don’t want to overreact but this was a great win for our young team,” coach Joe Doucette said. “Durand has a great team with a good coach and for us to go toe-to-toe with them is fantastic. I was very impressed with the resilience of our young players and I wasn’t sure our great effort was going to be enough. Megan’s three pointer was huge when we were down by nine and the rest of the team all came up big after that,” he added.
Hurlburt, Buchanan and Henricks all had career highs in the scoring department with Hurlburt finishing with 15 while Buchanan and Henricks both had 13. Colfax was 11 for 20 at the foul stripe and Durand was 8 of 12.
COLFAX (65) Hurlburt 5-3-4-15, Henricks 6-0-2-13, Buchanan 4-3-4-13, Fogarty 4-3-4-11, Heidorn 2-2-5-7, Schleusner 1-0-0-3, Dachel 1-0-1-3
DURAND (60) A. Schlosser 7-3-4-21, E. Annis 7-1-1-16, M Wegner 3-1-2-7, M. Radle 2-1-2-6, K. Brion 2-0-1-4, B. Hass 2-0-0-4, S. Wekkin 0-2-2-2
THREE POINTERS: Schlosser 4,Buchanan 2, Hurlburt 2, Dachel 1, Heidorn 1, Schleusner 1, Henricks 1, Radle 1, Annis 1
And if the streak didn’t end at home, it certainly wasn’t going to end on the Bulldogs’ own floor. After all, it was Boyceville who gave the Vikings their last conference loss way back on Feb. 7 of 2012 by a score of 61-52. The Bulldogs took a quick 2-0 lead but from there on out it was all Colfax. Boyceville probably had to call an electrician to do some repair work because the Vikings shot the lights out of the gym with their first 15 points coming off five triples by four different players. Heidorn started the barrage and Dachel followed, then Schleusner came off the bench to drill one and Durand-Christianson did one better as she canned back to back shots for a 15-5 lead and from there the defense smothered any attempt Boyceville made to get the ball in the hoop. It was 21-5 before the Bulldogs scored again and Colfax upped the advantage to 35-11 at the half in part by hitting 7 of 10 free throws along with a Fogarty triple while Durand-Christianson scored on a put back just before the buzzer sounded.
“It really gave us some momentum when we shot the ball so well early on,” Doucette said. “Megan and Hailey sparked us off the bench again.”
Fogarty and Dachel both knocked down another triple part way through the second half and after another driving deuce by Durand-Christianson it was a 35 point lead at 50-15 with just over 10 minutes to play. Henricks and Hurlburt became the sixth and seventh players to hit from downtown with Hurlburt’s triple making it 56-20 and Becca Lee finished off the Colfax scoring by hitting a pair of free throws for her first two varsity points.
“I really felt like the score was much closer but we were able to make shots and Boyceville was missing theirs,” Doucette said. “Shooting is contagious and we have been working hard at it. We made 11 three pointers by seven different players and that certainly helps to win games,” he added.
Balanced scoring was a key as Colfax had eight players put points on the board led by Heidorn with 13 and Durand-Christianson with a career high 10.The Vikings were 11 for 19 at the charity stripe while the Bulldogs struggled, hitting just 6 of 17.
COLFAX (58) Heidorn 4-3-7-13, Durand-Christianson 4-0-1-10, Fogarty 3-1-2-9, Hurlburt 2-2-2-7, Henricks 2-1-1-6, Dachel 2-0-0-6, Schleusner 1-2-3-5, Lee 0-2-2-2
BOYCEVILLE (23) M. Kuhn 3-3-7-10, B. Booth 1-0-0-3, J. Beyrer 1-0-0-3, E. Harnisch 1-1-4-3, M. Riek 0-2-6-2, C. Malean 1-0-0-2
THREE POINTERS: Heidorn 2, Dachel 2, Fogarty 2, Durand-Christianson 2, Schleusner 1, Hurlburt 1, Henricks 1, Booth 1, Beyrer 1, Kuhn 1