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D5 Semi-Final Notes: McDonell Central Catholic and Blair-Taylor coast to the state championship

03/10/2023, 3:00pm CST
By Colton Wilson

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Emily Cooper of McDonell Central Catholic

McDonell Central Catholic stifled Albany all morning as the Macks will play in the Division 5 State Championship on Saturday, the first title game in program history.

The Macks held Albany to just 7 of 42 from the field and 4 of 21 from three en route to a commanding 59-20 win in the first of two D5 state semifinal games.

Leading the way for McDonell was 6-0 junior Aubrey Dorn with 16 points, nine rebounds, four steals and three assists. Fellow junior Isabel Hartman was the only other Mack in double figures, finishing with 10 points.

No Comets scored in double figures, with sophomore Abby Hollis leading the way with eight points.

A stifling McDonell defense was on full display from the tip as Albany finished the first half with just 11 points and committing 10 turnovers, failing to find any sort of rhythm.

On the game, McDonell shot 52% from the field while Albany was just 17% overall. The Comets committed 19 total turnovers on the game that led to 18 points for the Macks.

McDonell scored 44 of their 59 points in the paint while simultaneously holding Albany to just two points inside the paint.

The Macks now will face Blair-Taylor in the WIAA Division 5 state title game as both programs will be playing for their first gold ball, or silver ball at that.

Abby Thompson of Blair-Taylor

Much like McDonell Central Catholic before them, the Wildcats of Blair-Taylor coasted to the Division 5 state championship.

Blair-Taylor defeated Wabeno/Laona 55-26 behind stingy defensive play and willingness to share the ball offensively.

Leading the way for Blair-Taylor was seniors Abby Thompson and Lindsay Steien. Thompson led all scorers with 18 points, and adding six steals, four assists and three rebounds. Steien finished with 16 points, seven assists, six steals and four rebounds from the point guard position.

Defensively, the Wildcats forced 24 turnovers and had 18 steals, leading to 25 points off turnovers.

On the game, Blair-Taylor moved the ball patiently in the half court getting great looks throughout. Of the 21 made field goals by the Wildcats, 15 of them were assisted. Freshman Andrea Waldera served as a deterrent in the paint for Blair-Taylor with her 6-1 frame and long arms. She finished with six blocks, just one shy of the state record held by Megan Gustafson of South Shore in 2015.

Wabeno/Laona struggled offensively, shooting just 12 of 50 overall from the field. The Rebels failed to hit a three-point shot in the entirety of the game, finishing 0-19 from beyond the arc.

Senior Grace Krawze and junior Malerie Krawze tied for the Rebels team high with six points. Senior Kaylyn LaRock had five points to go along with four rebounds and three assists.

Blair-Taylor is competing in the program's first ever state tournament and will now face off with McDonell Central Catholic, where one school will be coming away its first state championship.

Tag(s): News Archive  GBB News  Colton Wilson