Trojan girls’ season comes to an end

TCR/DAWN HAUGE Julissa Trejo was among the top scorers versus Schae er Academy last week, scoring 11 points, which included a perfect three for three outside the arc.
By : 
Chad Smith
Tri-County Record

The Rushford-Peterson girls’ basketball team split a pair of playoff games in the Section 1A tournament. The Lady Trojans started the postseason with a victory at home against Schaeffer Academy on Tuesday, Feb. 19. The win earned R-P a road trip to Grand Meadow on Thursday, Feb. 21, where the top-seeded Superlarks grabbed a a victory to end the R-P run. The Trojans finish the season 6-22 (1-16 TRC) overall.

R-P vs. SA

R-P had beaten Schaeffer Academy in in early December by 21 points (54-33), and the No. 16 seed Trojans started their Section 1A play-in game well. R-P nearly doubled up the No. 17 seeded Lions by halftime, up by 17 (35-18) points. They didn’t take their foot off the gas in the second half, outscoring Schaeffer by 13 to win 68-38.

The Trojans have struggled with offensive efficiency all season, but found it against the Lions, hitting nearly half (47%) their shots in the game, going 28 of 59 from the field. The Trojans dominated the game down low, outscoring Schaeffer 34-8 in the paint. The R-P girls hit 21 of their 38 shots inside the arc while also draining seven of 21 shots (33%) from three-point range.

The Lions actually kept up with the Trojans outside the arc, knocking down six of their 15 attempts (40%). However, Schaeffer struggled against the superior size of the Trojans, hitting only six of 24 shots closer to the basket.

R-P also took advantage of S-A mistakes. The Lions committed 24 turnovers, which the Trojans converted into 24 points. Eleven of those turnovers came as a result of R-P steals, with Abbey Hoegh and Kaylee Ruberg each getting two thefts of their own.

Hoegh was the top Trojans scorer with 24 points and led the team in assists (6). Julissa Trejo was a sparkplug, getting 11 points, which included a perfect three for three outside the arc. Megan Oian added nine points and four rebounds.

R-P won the rebound battle by a 32-30 margin, but a lot of those Lion rebounds came when the game wasn’t in doubt. Lauren Lawston (4 points) was the top Trojans on the glass with eight rebounds.

R-P vs. GM (63-26)

R-P couldn’t muster much in the way of offense against the veteran Superlarks, who led 29-14 at halftime. The Larks then outscored R-P 34-12 in the second half on the way to a 26-63win.

The Superlarks doubled up the Trojans’ shooting percentage, 40 percent to 20 percent. R-P hit just eight field goals all night (39 attempts), while GM hit 25 successful shots (58 attempts). Both teams hit nine free throws.

R-P struggled against the Superlarks’ defense, turning the ball over 28 times, 19 of which were a direct result of GM steals. R-P miscues led to a 32-3 points-off-turnovers advantage for GM.

Hoegh led the Trojans with 10 points in her final game in a R-P uniform, adding four rebounds and one steal. Oian chipped in eight points and three rebounds. Hinz added six points and five rebounds.

GM controlled the boards on both ends of the floor, outrebounding the Trojans 46-23. The 22 GM offensive rebounds led directly to a 19-6 advantage in second-chance points for the Superlarks, who move on to play No. 8 seed Blooming Prairie on Tuesday night, Feb. 26, in Rochester.

Looking ahead

The R-P girls’ team will look different next year as they say goodbye to seven seniors who contributed a lot on the court. The list includes top scorer Abbey Hoegh, Julissa Trejo, Kjersta Hinz, Megan Oian, Lauren Lawston, Peyton Hoiness, and Kaitlyn Bieberdorf. Five underclassmen are set to return for the 2019-20 season.