WCHS girls put scare into Gaels … for a while

WEBSTER CITY – An Emma White offensive rebound and lay in with 1:13 remaining in the third quarter drew the Webster City girls’ basketball team even with North Central Conference leading Fort Dodge St. Edmond last night inside the WCHS gymnasium.

But the euphoria on the Lynx sideline wouldn’t last.

The reigning league champion Gaels reeled off 21 consecutive points over a span that lasted 5 minutes, 17 seconds and turned what was a nail-biter into a blowout, as they went on to beat Webster City, 60-41.

Alli Huss poured in 22 points for St. Edmond (17-2, 15-2 NCC), including the first eight points of the fourth quarter. She hit a baseline jumper, and followed it up with back-to-back traditional 3-point plays to extend the Gaels’ lead to 41-31 less than two minutes into the final period.

“(Huss) is the smartest girl in our conference down low,” WCHS head coach Nicole Muhlenbruch said. “She missed shots in the first half, but she’s so composed that it didn’t bother her at all.

“If our low post girls could mirror her we’d be sitting pretty.”

It was 52-31 in St. Edmond’s favor when the Lynx (2-16, 2-14 NCC) finally ended the 21-0 spurt on a bucket by Hannah Myers.

Myers, a sophomore, notched eight points in the loss. Classmate Mikala Harrill also had a strong night with nine points and 13 rebounds. Senior Rachel Kauffman led the Lynx in scoring with 12, 10 coming in the second half.

Jaci Stumpf (14) and Anna Yung (12) also scored in double figures for the Gaels, who have won five straight games and hold a one-game advantage over Hampton-Dumont in the race for the conference championship.

Huss and Yung combined for 15 first-half points to help stake St. Edmond to a 23-16 advantage at the intermission.

Huss extended the Gaels’ cushion to 27-20 on a baseline jumper early in the third quarter, but WCHS responded with a 9-0 run to take a 29-27 lead with 2:20 remaining in the period. Kauffman knocked down three shots during the run.

Hannah Lentsch connected on consecutive shots to put St. Edmond back on top before White tied it up at 31 on her only bucket of the game.

And that’s when things began to fall apart for the Lynx, who have dropped 11 straight contests.

“(St. Edmond) is such a disciplined team. They just wait for you to make a mistake,” Muhlenbruch said. “They capitalized on our mistakes and we didn’t capitalize on their mistakes. We just didn’t attack when we had the opportunities.”

Emily Elm chipped in four points for WCHS, and Mikaleh McCoy finished with two points and eight rebounds.

The Lynx will be back at home on Friday to take on Humboldt at 6:15 p.m. They will entertain Iowa Falls-Alden in a Saturday afternoon contest at 2 p.m.

The WCHS freshman and junior varsity teams will take on the Cadets beginning at 12:30 p.m. on Saturday.