No. 15 Gaels lasso Cowgirls

The 15th-ranked (Class 2A) St. Edmond girls turned in a near-flawless performance Tuesday night, sprinting past Clarion-Goldfield, 66-31, inside the Gael gym.

In fact, the only area St. Edmond head coach Scott Messerly couldn’t quite figure out following the contest was the fouls his team committed.

“And the fouls we had, they weren’t even in our press defense,” Messerly said. “We just didn’t move our feet and picked up some really cheap fouls.

“But, outside of that, I thought we kept the intensity up regardless of what the score was, and everybody that came in gave us quality minutes.”

The Gaels (11-1 overall, 10-1 in North Central Conference) shot 50-percent from the field and turned 27 Cowgirl (2-10, 2-8) turnovers into 25 points.

Hannah Lentsch posted a double-double, scoring 16 points and grabbing 10 rebounds. The lone senior on the roster also had two steals and two blocked shots. Anna Yung scored 16 points, combining with Lentsch to go 6-for-6 in the second quarter.

“We moved the ball and didn’t really have to use our offense too much, as we pushed the tempo and got out and ran quite a bit,” Messerly said. “I thought we were strong in transition, and we also did a great job of turning Clarion-Goldfield’s mistakes into points.”

After staking claim to a 17-3 advantage after the first quarter, St. Edmond made 11 of its 17 field goals. Clarion-Goldfield was able to finally get some offense going, scoring 16 points, but the Gaels continued to apply pressure, building their lead to as many as 23 following a Drue Specht three-pointer.

Specht, who came off the bench, was 3-for-3 from the field and 2-for-2 from the line for nine points. Jaci Stumpf scored eight and Alli Huss added seven and 10 boards.

It was more of the same after halftime, with St. Edmond going on an 18-1 run. Yung scored eight straight at one point.

“Anna had some foul trouble, but she looked strong again on the offensive end of the court,” Messerly said. “We kind of tried to make sure the girls didn’t pay attention to the score and just played the game there in the third quarter. I thought we did a good job of that.”

Katie Hinkle led the Cowgirls with eight points and four steals, while Celeste Swanson scored seven and had four rebounds.

The Gaels return to action on Friday at Bishop Garrigan. Clarion-Goldfield hosts Eagle Grove the same night.