Resorters fall shy in hard-fought regional debut

by Greg Ceilley
of The Review staff


PAIGE NELSON of Elkhart Lake looks for an open teammate while being defended by Sheboygan Lutheran’s Dacota Weigert (25) and an unidentified teammate in Tuesday’s D-5 regional basketball opener. Lutheran’s Julia Touw (11) looks on. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley PAIGE NELSON of Elkhart Lake looks for an open teammate while being defended by Sheboygan Lutheran’s Dacota Weigert (25) and an unidentified teammate in Tuesday’s D-5 regional basketball opener. Lutheran’s Julia Touw (11) looks on. – Review photo by Greg Ceilley SHEBOYGAN – The Elkhart Lake-Glenbeulah Resorters played their hearts out here Tuesday night but came up just short, 33-30, against Sheboygan Lutheran in a hard-fought Division 5 girls regional basketball opener.

The Resorters almost forced overtime when Claire Feldmann’s three-point shot from the top of the circle grazed the front of the rim and the ball went out of bounds with 1.8 seconds left, with the Crusaders getting possession.

Camrie Schmitz stole the ensuing inbounds pass and was fouled inside as time expired. Schmitz missed both free-throw attempts but the game was already decided.

Sixth-seeded Lutheran, 7-16, advances to the semifinals Friday at No. 3-seeded Hustisford at 7 p.m. The 11th-seeded Resorters ended their season at 4-18.

The smaller Elkhart team relied on its quickness to pressure the Crusaders’ ball-handlers all over the court and it paid off as the Resorters came up with several steals. Lutheran committed a whopping 30 turnovers, many of which were caused by Elkhart’s hounding defense.

The Resorters had trouble scoring inside because of Lutheran’s height advantage but had several scoring opportunities in transition after getting steals. Unfortunately for the Resorters they didn’t capitalize very much on their steals – missing several close-range shots.

Free-throw shooting hurt the Resorters as they made only 3 of 10 and missed the front end of a one-and- one opportunity.

The contest was nip-and-tuck all night, with the largest lead for either team at six. Morgan Gottowski’s rare four-point play on a three-point goal and a free throw gave Lutheran a 14-11 lead with 3:29 left in the first half.

Elkhart answered with a 7-2 run which gave it an 18-16 halftime edge. Shannon De Vries scored inside, Ellie Ausloos hit a layup off her steal, and Alex Schneider made a free throw and a perimeter shot.

The Resorter took a 24-18 lead with 15:30 remaining after a 6-2 spurt. Kianna Bahr scored two baskets inside, including one on a follow up, and then hit a driving layup.

Elkhart then went ice-cold from the field as the Crusaders went on a 7-0 run to go up 25-24 with 9:40 remaining. Gottowski’s three-ball keyed the rally.

The Resorters ended the dry spell when Feldmann scored on a short jumper after snaring a rebound at the 7:15 mark, giving her team a 26-15 lead. Bahr’s driving layup pushed the lead to 28-25 with 6:10 left.

Lutheran took the lead for good, 29-28, when Dacota Weigert scored on a strong move to the hoop with 3:51 remaining.

“Our kids played hard. We said to leave it all on the floor and give your best effort, and they did. We came up a little bit short. I can’t be more proud of a group of kids,” said longtime Resorter head coach Donny Kulow.

“We struggle scoring at times but our defense has really kept us in games. I thought we did a nice job of pressing and making things happen [on defense] but we just didn’t finish [on shots] at times, and kind of lost people here and there [on defense].”

Bahr, a junior forward, led Elkhart in scoring with 11 points and freshman guard Alex Schneider hit six off the bench. Schmitz and Feldmann paced the team in rebounds with six and five, respectively.

Sonia Schubert paced the Resorters in assists with three. Schmitz had a team-high four steals and Schneider had three.

Lutheran held Schubert, Elkhart’s top scorer this season (11.7 average per game coming in), scoreless.

Weigert led Lutheran’s offense with 13 points.

“We had kids come in and contribute. Alex gave us some energy and knocked down some shots. Shannon De Vries [freshman forward] came in and helped us against their big kids inside,” said Kulow.

“It hurts [losing the game]. I feel for the seniors. It’s hard to say goodbye to these kids.”


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