If you’re a current subscriber, log in below. If you would like to subscribe, please click the subscribe tab above.
Username and Password Help
By Amber Hayden
COLFAX — The Lady Vikings came to play last Tuesday evening especially when it counted.
In the much anticipated conference showdown between state-ranked powers, Colfax, led by Kameri Meredith, supercharged its second-half offense and applied the defensive clamps to overcome a single-point halftime deficit against Durand to knock the Panthers from the ranks of the unbeatens with an impressive 69-57 home victory in the January 8 contest for supremacy in the Dunn-St. Croix.
The eighth-ranked Lady Vikings outscored the third-rated Panthers 39-26 in the second half, after trailing 31-30 at the intermission, to remain unbeaten in league play so far this season and now hold a one-game lead over Durand.
After a slow start in its home game against the Boyceville Bulldogs last Friday evening, January 11, Colfax was able to pull away late in the first half and went on for a 66-34 win over Boyceville keep its conference mark an unblemished 8-0. Overall, the Vikings improved to 10-2 as they passed the regular season’s midway point last week.
Colfax had yet another tough test this past Monday when it traveled to Eau Claire to take on the leaders of the Cloverbelt, the 10-3 Regis Ramblers, before returning home to host the Spring Valley Cardinals this Thursday, January 17. That contest will be followed by another challenging contest next Tuesday, January 22 when Colfax hosts rival Elk Mound in the second of their home-and-home conference series. The Vikings took the first meeting, 46-41, back on December 4 in Elk Mound.
For the Lady Vikes, their star players showed up as they headed into last Tuesday’s, January 8, contest against the Durand Panthers, who coming in were 9-0 over all and 5-0 in conference, that would determine the sole leader of the Dunn-St. Croix.
In particular, junior Kameri Meredith pumped in a career and season-high 30 points including 24 of the Lady Vikings’ 39 second-half points to help Colfax overcome a one-point halftime deficit and earn a big 69-57 victory over the Durand Panthers, Division 4’s third-ranked squad.
“Super excited about the night, we had three hard fought wins over a great program,” said Vikings coach Joe Doucette of his Vikings’ winning trifecta which also included victories by Colfax’s junior varsity and freshman squads. “Durand is tough, their JV and varsity were unbeaten coming in. I really thought we showed a lot of great qualities all night I was going to be fired up even if we had lost.”
But for Colfax’s head coach, players and fans that was not the case as Meredith and her supporting cast of teammates stepped up, especially in the second half, to gain a 12-point win and earned the right , for now, to call themselves leaders of the Dunn-St. Croix Conference.
Sarah Dunbar of Durand was the first to put points on the scoreboard with a mere 30 seconds ticked off the clock. Kameri Meredith answered back with the first of many doubles followed by a second double from Alyssa Dachel to give the Vikings their first lead of the evening, 4-3.
Meredith was a beast for the Vikings all game but particularly in the latter half as she finished with nearly half of the Vikings’ tally. She found her way to the basket for seven doubles, netted three triples (all in the final 18 minutes) from the outside and was seven-of-eight from the foul line.
“Kameri Meredith and Morgan Schleusner stood out in the second half, Meredith with help from her teammates was a beast and had 24 points in the second. She really has a knack of stepping up in big games,” said Doucette. “Schleusner was awesome also she was so steady in the second half, her ability with Alyssa and others to handle Durand’s tough pressure was a huge key and her free throws finished the deal.”
Durand called its first time out with 9:16 left in the first half and down by four. But the Panthers couldn’t be held down for long as a double and a pair of foul shots from Hannah Prissel gave the Panthers the lead back by a score of 18-16. After which Prissel did leave the game with a minor injury to her ankle, but returned minutes later.
Josie Steinke came into game off the bench and helped the Vikings to a tie the score at 18 all. Meredith followed with a bucket at 5:23 to give Colfax a 20-18.
The next five minutes would be a battle of back-and-forth between the Vikings and the Panthers before the half came to an end with Durand holding a 31-30 lead.
“The first half was back-and-forth we were maybe a little to excited and rushed some things,” Doucette explained. “It looked like they were going to take control early in the second half, but we kept our composure and took a great shot from them and we were able to counter and take control.”
Alyssa Dachel and Morgan Schleusner made key baskets throughout the two 18 minutes halves, Dachel put up two doubles, a triple and was two-of-two from the line while Schleusner went eight-of-ten from the charity stripe. Six of Schleusner’s foul shots came within two minutes of each other, two of which fell with 15 seconds left in the second half.
Forwards Emma Hurlburt and Rachel Scharlau stepped up for Colfax as they found themselves hitting the basket from underneath for six and seven points respectively. Hurlburt hit three doubles as did Scharlau who was also one-of-three from the charity stripe.
“The scary part of it is that we have a lot of room for growth I really think we can improve a ton more,” Doucette stated.
With less than half of the conference season over the Vikings will look to build on their latest win moving forward, said coach Doucette.
Coming in off the bench to score for Colfax were teammates Maddy Barstad with four points, Jayna Bowe with a triple, and Josie Steinke hit the backboards for two.
“Our fans were great again, every time we needed some energy they helped us with that,” Doucette commented. “Both our JV and freshmen remained unbeaten with hard fought wins.”
COLFAX 69, DURAND 57
Colfax 30 39 – 69
Durand 31 26 – 57
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-TP)
Colfax— A. Dachel 3-2-4-9, M. Schleusner 0-8-2-8, J. Bowe 1-0-0-3, K. Meredith 10-7-30, J. Steinke 1-0-0-2, R. Scharlau 3-1-2-7, M. Barstad 2-0-2-4, E. Hurlburt 3-0-3-6.
Durand— E. Hansen 6-3-5-19, H. Prissel 1-6-0-8, L. Sobelko 0-2-2-2, E. Annis 6-2-3-14, S. Dunbar 3-1-5-8, M. Kilboten 1-2-3-4, M. Hurlburt 0-2-1-2.
C— A. Dachel 1, J. Bowe 1, K. Meredith 3; D— E. Hansen 4, S. Dunbar 1.
The Lady Vikings got off to a slow start last Friday evening, January 11, when it hosted Boyceville as the Bulldogs trailed just 13-12 with less than five mintues remaining in the first half.
Colfax struggled to make its shots especially from behind the arc as it netted just two treys in the first 18 minutes.
“We could not make any and didn’t rebound any of the misses, we probably shot a bunch too quick and should have been more persistent going inside,” said coach Doucette. “Without Kameri, we would of really struggled. She is playing at a very high level and saved a lot of possessions for us.”
But Kameri Meredith took over for the Vikings in the waning minutes of first-half play. The junior scored 16 of her game-leading 23 points in that span which saw Colfax take a 31-15 lead into intermission.
The Vikings began to see their outside shoots start to fall in the second half as they finished with nine three-pointers for the game en route to the 66-34 win.
Also stepping up play for the Vikings were teammates Alyssa Dachel and Rachel Scharlau. Dachel scored 11 points before suffering a second-half injury. Scharlau hit a double and a pair of threes.
“The second half I thought we were much better, we moved the ball better and got inside their zone better,” Doucette explained. “We made seven threes in the second half and passed the ball better, again we got a chance to play a lot of kids.”
Dachel rolled her ankle and time will tell how bad it is, Doucette said, as he explained Dachel is a tremendous leader and one of the toughest kids he knows.
Colfax had seven players hit the net from the outside, Morgan Schleusner, Jayna Bowe, Rachel Knutson and Saville Wilson all put up a triple in the second half for the Vikings.
Adding to the point total for the Vikings were players Addisyn Olson with two doubles, Maddy Barstad contributed a pair of doubles, and senior Emma Hurlburt hit the glass for two.
“Last year we kept improving and we feel we can this year,” Doucette explained. “We have a lot of people playing ball well and we seem to be moving and sharing the ball better.”
Colfax 31 35 – 66
Boyceville 15 19 – 34
TEAM STATISTICS (FG-FT-F-TP)
Colfax— A. Dachel 4-2-0-11, M. Schleusner 1-2-0-5, J. Bowe 1-0-1-3, K. Meredith 9-3-1-23, R. Knutson 1-0-0-3, S. Wilson 1-0-0-3, A. Olson 2-0-3-4, R. Scharlau 3-0-3-8, M. Barstad 2-0-1-4, E. Hurlburt 1-0-0-2.
Boyceville— R. Prestrud 4-0-0-12, E. Ouellette 2-1-0-5, A. Bloom 1-0-2-3, J. Boesl 1-1-1-3, K. Grambow 1-0-3-2, A. Evenson 0-6-2-6.
C— A. Dachel 1, M. Schleusner 1, J. Bowe 1, K. Meredith 2, R. Knutson 1, S. Wilson 1, R. Scharlau 2;
BV— R. Prestrud 4, A. Bloom 1.