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COLFAX— With just a week’s worth of practices under its belt, the Colfax girls’ basketball team scrimmaged the Menomonie Mustangs on November 12.
And as the Vikings’ long-time head coach Joe Doucette explained, a lot of his players gained some very valuable experience from that scrimmage, and it also showed areas where the squad will need to improve during the season.
“We have worked hard to get ready those first two weeks and we had a lot of people work hard this summer,” said coach Doucette.
That scrimmage and the off-season dedication paid early dividends in Colfax’s first two games of the 2018-19 campaign.
Playing much larger schools to open to the season, Colfax more than held their own.
The Lady Vikes began their season Friday evening, November 16, with a home game against Hayward and left the court with an impressive 57-30 win against the Hurricanes that gave Coach Doucette the 600th career win of his storied career.
Then on a short turnaround, Colfax hosted the formidable Hudson Raiders of the Big Rivers Conference on Monday, November 19 and took a 60-52 win from the Raiders.
2-0 Colfax began a three-game road swing last night (November 27) in Bloomer before heading to Spring Valley on Thursday to open Dunn-St. Croix action against the Cardinals. The Vikings will then have an early-season showdown against the rival Mounders in Elk Mound on Tuesday, December 4.
The Vikings couldn’t of asked for a better way to start their season than with a win against the Hayward Hurricanes on Friday, November 16 as they led from start to finish.
Emma Hurlburt made her way to the middle to tip off against the Hurricanes, and managed to get the ball to teammate Morgan Schleusner for the Vikings’ first possession.
Kameri Meredith kicked off the game with back-to-back field goals to put the Lady Vikes in front 4-0, and shortly after Alyssa Dachel joined in giving Colfax a 6-0 lead over Hayward.
Meredith went on to lead the Vikings’ team in scoring with five field goals in the first half, and was four of four from the line for a total of 14 points.
The Vikings’ offense put up 36 points in the first half while the defense had a strong showing as it held Hayward to a mere 14 points.
“Alyssa and Kameri, with help, really defended their (Hayward) two stars,” Doucette stated. “It was great to see how hard we tried and the teamwork showed.
Emma Hurlburt made her way to the line off of a block during a successful layup to score two points. Hurlburt was one of two from the line with five field goals totaling 11 points.
The Vikings’ junior forward, Josie Steinke, made her presence known during the game with two well placed three-point shots, one in each half as she finished with six points.
“Morgan (Schleusner) kept four of five possessions alive with great effort, and Rachel Scharlau and Seville Wilson sparked us off the bench,” coach Doucette added.
Adding to the points were Alyssa Dachel with nine, Seville Wilson and Rachel Scharlau with six, Madison Barstad with three and Morgan Schleusner with two.
“We are super excited, we feel we can be very good if we keep working hard,” Doucette explained. “I thought our ability to defend and rebound was huge.”
COLFAX 57, HAYWARD 30
Colfax 36 21 – 57
Hayward 14 16 – 30
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-TP)
Colfax — A. Dachel 4-1-2-9, M. Schleusner 0-2-1-2, K. Meredith 5-4-0-14, S. Wilson 2-2-2-6, R. Scharlau 2-2-3-6, E. Hurlburt 5-1-1-11, M. Barstad 1-1-0-3, Josie Steinke 2-0-3-6.
Hayward — H. Miller 1-5-2-7, A. Schmidt 1-0-1-2, E. Strapon 0-1-6-4, H. Miller 1-1-3-3, E. Neff 3-4-4-10, E. Morgan 2-0-0-4.
C — J. Steinke 2; H — E. Strapon 1.
The Colfax girls headed back to the court last Monday evening, November 19, to take on the Hudson Raiders in their second non-conference game in a three-day span.
The first half of the game was a nail biter as the score went back and fourth and ended in 28 all tie.
The Lady Vikes, however, came back out in the second half and took a 12-point lead over the Raiders before cooling down and allowing Hudson a chance to catch back up.
Colfax held strong though and took the win against one of the Big River conference favorites, 60-52.
“They made us look rushed and nervous early and I thought we were in trouble,” coach Doucette said.
But resiliency and a tough mental attitude helped Colfax to hang in there and find a way to the victory, the Vikings’ coach explained.
The first half was riddled with fouls for Colfax and senior Alyssa Dachel received three of her four and sat on the bench a majority of the first half. During her time on the floor, Dachel was perfect from the line making six of six and adding in a pair of field goals.
Kameri Meredith was a strong leader for the Vikings, scoring a total of 13 points off of five field goals and three from the foul line.
“I have a ton of respect for Kameri, she played the whole game and tries hard on every possession. She had 13 rebounds and 13 points,” Doucette stated.
Emma Hurlburt and Rachel Scharlau also had strong performances, finishing with 13 points each.
Junior point guard Morgan Schleusner was tough throughout the game after getting a slow start against the Raiders. Schleusner found herself heavily guarded during the second half, but still managed to get off a long ball for three and finished her evening with six points.
“Early last year we would of gave up pretty easy, it took a while to develop toughness and togetherness,” stated Doucette. “We are hoping to build on that this year.”
COLFAX 60, HUDSON 52
Colfax 28 32 – 60
Hudson 28 24 – 52
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-TP)
Colfax — A. Dachel 2-6-4-10, M. Schleusner 0-3-1-6, K. Meredith 5-3-2-13, R. Scharlau 5-3-1-13, E. Hurlburt 6-1-3-13, J. Steinke 0-0-1-3.
Hudson — Sophia Jonas 3-0-1-6, Livi Boily 2-1-3-5, Melanie Carli 3-8-3-14, Annika Lewis 0-0-2-3, Lauren Stolzman 5-4-1-20, Audrey Hatfield 2-0-5-4.
C — M. Schleusner 1, J. Steinke 1; H – A. Lewis 1, L. Stolzman 2.