(Above) Clear Lake’s Zoe Fasbender brings the ball down the floor during Monday night’s game against New Hampton.
Two more wins last week moved the third rated (3A) Clear Lake girls to 12-1 overall and 7-0 in the North Central Conference.
This week the team will host Clarion-Goldfield-Dows Friday and then travel to play at Algona Tuesday, Jan. 23. That game will be key in the race for a conference crown, as Algona is presently in second place in the standings with a 5-2 NCC record.
CL 81, New Hampton 37
“It was a very good game for us offensively, probably the best we’ve ever shot in our gym,” said Coach Bart Smith after his team dominated New Hampton (9-6) in a non-conference game played Monday, Jan. 8. “We took good shots and made extra passes to get those good shots. I was happy with the ball movement and execution on the offensive side. Our defensive pressure continues to be good and we get teams to play at an uncomfortable pace.”
Nine Lions contributed to the scoring output of the team, led by sophomore Sara Faber with 33 points. Faber had a hot hand, sinking 11 of 14 field goal attempts. She sunk seven of eight three-pointers and was four-for-six from the free throw line.
Senior Jordyn Barragy was also in double figures with 10 points and a team-high four rebounds.
The Lions jumped out to a 24-8 first quarter lead before the visiting Chickasaws began to adjust. An even second quarter made the score 40-24 at the half.
Clear Lake made adjustments of their own for the second half and put the game out of reach with a 22-5 third quarter. All 12 players saw playing time in the 81-37 victory.
Freshman Ali Maulsby came off the bench to score nine points, all from beyond the arc. Sophomores Julia Merfeld and Lexi Fasbender had six points apiece, while Chloe Mueller, Gretchen Jones and Zoe Fasbender had five points apiece. Rowan Fread added two points.
While the offense was strong, Coach Smith said he was disappointed in his teams’ defensive rebounding for a few possessions. “That needs to be good all the time,” he said.
In addition to Faber’s outstanding shooting night, Smith praised the play of Gretchen Jones, saying she saw the floor really well and continues to defend the ball very well.
CL 57, St. Ed’s 16
Playing on the road is never easy, but Friday night was a nightmare for St. Ed’s. The Gaels (3-9, 1-6) scored just one point in the first half of play and were defeated 57-16 in North Central Conference play.
Ironically, Coach Smith thought his team got off to a slow start in the first quarter, scoring just nine points. However, the Lions righted the ship and played more characteristically in the remaining periods.
“When we don’t start well, it usually means we don’t attack the basket. That’s what we weren’t doing in the first half,” said Coach Smith, whose team led 29-1 at halftime. “When the threes don’t fall we have to attack the basket and get the ball inside.”
Jordyn Barragy had a good second half for the Lions, partly because her teammates got the ball to her in the post. She finished with 14 points and a team-high seven rebounds.
“She’s starting to produce some points for us down there and can be someone we can rely on if we are struggling from the perimeter,” said Coach Smith.
Sara Faber had another strong outing, finishing with 25 points and five of the teams’ 22 steals in the game. Lexi Fasbender was also in double figures with 15 points.
Mikayla Vanderploeg chipped in two points and Chloe Mueller had one.