Female Area Athlete of the Week: Rysevy’s 23 points and nine blocks propel Pequot Lakes
It’s playoff time in girls basketball.
For the South Subsection 7-2A No. 2 seed Pequot Lakes Patriots, they defeated the No. 3 seed Crosby-Ironton Rangers 58-36 to advance in the Section 7-2A playoffs. Patriots’ center Lola Rysavy played a big role leading all scorers with 23 points.
“We started off pretty strong with Emma Benson and I having some pretty good plays right off the bat,” Rysavy said. “We knew it wasn’t going to be an easy one going in, so a lot of it was a mental game that was there.
“We knew (C-I) was going to be physical down low because they have always kind of pushed us that way. So it was a lot of working to make sure I was sealing down low and that our guards were looking in and seeing what was open.”
The senior captain, known as the team-mom to many on the team according to head coach Katrina Moody, owns a season averaging of 6.8 points and 4.9 rebounds a game. Her production has picked up recently.
“She’s falling into her role the last couple of weeks,” Moody said. “She’s being more aggressive and in that Crosby game she helped us on both sides of the floor.”
She also anchors the Patriots’ defense and against C-I tallied nine blocked shots. On the season, she averages 1.7 blocks per game.
“She’s definitely grown on the rebounding aspect,” Moody said. “Defensively, her help defense is usually a block for us. At least in the Crosby game it was. It’s always good because she helped out when she can and her teammates appreciate it as well.”
Pequot Lakes ended the regular season on a five-game winning streak heading into the playoffs. They find themselves on an eight-game winning streak headed into the Section 7-2A Finals, Friday, March 6, against the Duluth Marshall Hilltoppers.
“The start of the season wasn’t super great, but we have improved and come closer as a team which has helped us on and off the court really,” Rysavy said. “It’s nice to have that connection when we go in.”
Rysavy played varsity as a sophomore. Her biggest improvement has been her confidence. The confidence showed against C-I as she turned in one of her better scoring games.
“I think the biggest boost has been confidence,” Moody said. “She started being a little more aggressive and some of those shots started to go down and that gives her more confidence in herself.”
Rysavy operates in the low post for the Patriots. She knows where she’s most comfortable with the ball and when she doesn’t have it in one of those spots she’ll pass.
“My best spot is probably on the left block,” Rysavy said. “Sometimes I do a dropstep and then go up and other times it’s a step to the middle. It really varies.”
Moody says the group of seniors on the team have done a good job of leading, including Rysavy.
“She’s always been the one to get the girls fired up and get them ready to go and make sure they have all their stuff,” Moody said. “They are always excited to be with each other and are very good teammates.”
School: Pequot Lakes
Highlights: 23 points against Crosby-Ironton in the Section 7-2A Quarterfinals.