Area Girls Basketball: Rangers hold off another ranked opponent
Crosby-Ironton hosted the Detroit Lakes Lakers Thursday, Feb. 23.
CROSBY — whoever has the recipe, the home cooking is working.
With a 64-55 victory over Class 3A’s ninth-ranked Detroit Lakes Lakers Thursday, Feb. 23, the Crosby-Ironton Rangers improved to 10-0 on the Dave Galovich gym floor.
The Rangers used an outside-in approach as senior Hannah Compton ignited the offense early and often from 3-point. On senior night, the guard finished with 17 points, including four 3-pointers. She added six rebounds, two assists and two steals.
“I think last game, we definitely came out slow and then we weren’t hitting shots,” Compton said. “We knew that it was crucial to make those shots and almost scare them out farther so that Tori (Oehrlein) would have space to score. When we hit those outside 3s like Margaret (Silgen), Sammie (Hachey) and me, Tori has wider lanes and she can make her own plays like we all know she can.”
Oehrlein did what she always does. The freshman finished with 33 points and 17 rebounds, three steals and three assists. Compton and Oehrlein combined for 50 of C-I’s 64 points.
“They were in a box-and-one, but we still needed a set for Tori to get her offense, but at the same time others needed to step up and scare them out of that defense,” C-I head coach Pete Vukelich said. “Honestly, it was kind of a copycat game. Albany played a really good 2-3 zone against us in the second game of the year. We went back to it after we watched that film and it was effective tonight. DL is an athletic team that cuts really well and that takes away their cuts.”
An Oehrlein putback followed by a Compton 3-pointer jump-started C-I’s second-half offense. The duo continued to own the scoring column until teammate Sammie Hachey’s basket handed C-I a 42-27 lead.
Back-to-back baskets from DL’s Gabriella Bettcher and Abigail Larson were answered by an Oehrlein basket and Lucy Lewandowski’s first basket of the game. Lewandowski would hit a 3-pointer a few possessions later for a 49-33 C-I advantage at 8:44 of the second half.
“A lot of times it was just a matter of scoring after they scored,” Compton said. “We can’t take a play off. We have to keep going every single second until the buzzer stops. That’s really it. There’s not much more.”
Baskets from DL’s Jaycee Hauser and Karlee Mace were quickly answered by Oehrlein’s five consecutive points. She added another basket for a 56-40 edge.
DL cut CI’s lead to 58-45 with 3:19 remaining. Hauser and Larson then hit consecutive 3s to make it 58-51 C-I.
Oehrlein answered with an old-fashioned 3-point play to build the Rangers’ lead back to 10. C-I was 4-of-6 from the line down the stretch to seal its seventh straight victory with just one game remaining against Class 2A’s fourth-ranked Minnehaha Academy before Section 7-2A playoffs.
“Honestly, I just think our team chemistry is at a high right now,” Compton said. “Everyone is getting along on the court and off the court. Practices are fun. There is no drama between this team and I think that’s helped a lot.
“And, we all play our roles. There’s no more selfish basketball going on. At the beginning of the year, I think everyone was trying to figure out who they were or where they were going to be. Now, it’s this is my role and I’m going to do it well. From there we’ve been able to take that and go.”
Compton scored the Rangers’ first five points of the game and C-I never trailed. The senior opened with a 3-pointer and added a lay-up for a 5-3 lead.
An Oehrlein 3-pointer followed by a Hachey bucket and an Oehrlein 3-point play gave C-I a 19-8 advantage at the 10:20 mark.
The Lakers answered with an 8-0 run to pull to 19-16 with 3:07 remaining in the half. Oehrlein dropped a 3-pointer to stop DL’s burst. She added another basket followed by a Compton 3-pointer to build a 27-18 lead with 1:01 remaining.
DL’s Larson scored the half’s final basket to go into the break with a 28-20 C-I advantage. Larson finished with a team-high 19 points followed by Hauser’s 18.
“We preach all year about getting around a screen, or get up and over it,” Vukelich said about trying to contain Larson “Against an opponent like that, she’s not a great perimeter shooter, but you have to cut her off. It was the only time all year I told our girls to go under the screen. She is one quick kid so she was tough to stop.”
Of the teams on the current Class 2A Top 20 ranking, C-I has played No. 2 Albany, will play No. 4 Minnehaha Academy, defeated No 5 New London-Spicer and No. 13 Holdingford, split with No. 8 ranked Pequot Lakes, faced No. 11 Montevideo and No. 16 Pine City along with playing Class 3A’s No. 9 ranked Detroit Lakes twice and defeating Class 1A’s top-ranked Mountain Iron-Buhl.
“I think we’re really prepared and I think our schedule is paying dividends,” Vukelich said. “We knew we would take some licks early in the year. We knew that coming in. We knew we weren’t going to have the grand schedule of going 26-, 25-and-0. We knew we were going to take lumps, but it’s paying off now. It’s paying off huge.
“We are undefeated at home. That’s been huge for us. The crowd tonight was one of the best I’ve seen. Hats off to his gym and the fans.”
Detroit Lakes 20 35 -- 55
Crosby-Ironton 28 36 -- 64
Abigail Larson 19, Karlee Mace 4, Grace Gunderson 4, Gabriella Bettcher 8, Ellie Lunde 2, Jacee Hauser 18. FG 21-53 (39%), FT 7-16 (43%).3-point 6-22 (27%).
Josie Schaefer 2, Lucille Lewandowski 5, Hannah Compton 17, Brynn Hollenhorst 1, Margaret Silgen 2, Samatha Hachey 4, Tori Oehrlein 33. FG 24-51 (47%), FT 8-14 (57%). 3-point 8-23 (34%).
JEREMY MILLSOP may be reached at 218-855-5856 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jeremymillsop.
Crosby-Ironton 64, Detroit Lakes 55
Key: Hannah Compton and Tori Oehrlein combined for 50 of C-I’s 64 points
Conference: CI 9-2, DL 8-2.
Overall: CI 18-7, DL 22-4.
Next: Crosby-Ironton hosts Minnehaha Academy 7:15 p.m. Friday, Feb. 24.