Spartans overdue for a win
If there's a team that appears overdue for a win, it's the Somerset girls basketball team.
The Spartans finished with their second straight winless season in the Middle Border Conference on Friday. The Spartans surely have had their share of close calls however. The latest close call was on Friday, when the Spartans lost 33-28 at Amery.
After trailing 26-14 at the start of the fourth quarter, the Spartans made a huge comeback. They pushed their way back into the game, tying the score at 28-28, with the ball in their possession.
The Spartans were fouled, but missed both free throws. Amery got the rebound and got the ball upcourt to Kathleen Derrington, who put the Warriors ahead 30-28.
In their next possession the Spartans were fouled again, but missed the front end of a bonus free-throw chance. Amery then was able to control the ball and hit free throws to build the final margin to 33-28.
The Spartans were able to make this a game after trailing 20-8 at halftime.
"This was probably our best half of the year," Somerset coach Bill Powers said of the second half. "We've played three pretty decent games in a row. You can see the confidence starting to come out."
The loss to Amery was the closest Somerset came to winning, but the Spartans were competitive right to the end in their previous games with Prescott and New Richmond.
Senior Whitney Langer led the Spartans with nine points against Amery. Mariah Belisle and Roxy Martin each scored six points. Julie Markfort and Kendra Steinlicht shared the team lead in rebounds with four.
This game led into Tuesday's WIAA Division 3 regional opening round. The Spartans were an eight seed in the tournament, facing St. Croix Falls, a number one seed. Powers was of the mindset that the Spartans have a solid shot of knocking off the top seed. He said the Saints are led by their perimeter players. With Langer, Martin and Steinlicht included, Somerset's perimeter defensive players are one of the strongest areas of the team.
The winner of Tuesday's game will be playing again this Thursday, against the winner of the St. Croix Central-Fall Creek contest.
Amery 33, Somerset 28
Langer 3 2-2 9, Rorabeck 1 0-1 3, Martin 3 0-1 6, Markfort 0 1-6 1, Belisle 3 0-0 6, Lindner 0 0-0 0, Johnson 0 0-0 0, Johanneck 0 0-0 0.Totals 11 3-10 28.
Elbing 2 2-10 7, Schiel 0 0-1 0, Gehrman 3 0-0 6, Pinger 0 2-6 2, Webber 1 0-0 2, Seaman 3 0-2 6, Derrington 3 4-5 10. Totals 12 8-24 33.
Somerset 2 6 6 14 28
Amery 2 18 6 7 33
Three-point goals -- Langer, Rorabeck, Steinlicht, Elbing. Fouled out -- Martin. Total fouls -- Somerset 22, Amery 16.