Parkston rallies, beats Wagner for 10A crownWAGNER — In a repeat of last year’s District 10A girls’ basketball championship game, the outcome remained the same.
By: Brooke Cersosimo, The Daily Republic
WAGNER — In a repeat of last year’s District 10A girls’ basketball championship game, the outcome remained the same.
Last year, it was Parkston’s Logan Wagner who made a 3-pointer at the end of the game to knock off top-seeded Wagner, undefeated at the time and ranked No. 1 in the state.
This time, Trojan senior Erica Herrold made all the difference as second-seeded Parkston went on to defeat top-seeded Wagner 57-53 Thursday night in Wagner.
The Trojans, on a nine-game win streak, advance to play West Central in the Region 5A tournament.
The Red Raiders led 31-22 at the half as junior Alex Dvorak made a jumper at the buzzer to put Wagner up by nine, but that didn’t faze the Trojans.
“You got give Wagner a lot of credit because they played hard,” said Parkston coach Rob Van Laecken, whose team improved to 16-6 on the season. “We struggled running our offense in the first half and we had to change that. When we came out in the second and Erica went to work.”
After trailing by six heading into the final frame, Herrold scored 11 of Parkston’s 16 fourth-quarter points.
“At the beginning we were nervous, rushing shots and taking shots we shouldn’t have taken,” said Herrold, who led all players with 27 points. “At halftime, coach (Van Laecken) talked about getting the ball into the post, and that worked for us.”
Wagner dominated the first half, building an 11-point lead twice in the second quarter. Senior Nicole Weber scored nine of the Red Raiders’ first-half points and finished the game with a team-high 17 points.
“I thought Taylor Bormann played a great second half defensively on Weber,” said Van Laecken, whose team shot 19-of-47 for 40 percent from the field and 18-of-28 from the foul line. “The kids never quit and it’s a big win for us.”
Parkston’s McKenzie Weidenbach scored 11 points and Herrold grabbed seven of the team’s 26 rebounds.
Wagner’s Weber and freshman Ali Kuca recorded double-doubles in the game as Weber brought down 10 rebounds. Kuca had 13 points and a team-high 11 rebounds for the Red Raiders, who were 18-of-55 for 32 percent from the field and 13-of-18 from the free-throw line.
“We played well defensively, but they attacked, got to the rim and got to the foul line, and that was the biggest difference,” Wagner coach Michael Koupal said after the game. “We played well against a good and experienced team (tonight). I couldn’t be more proud of my girls this season.”
Senior Jessa Doom, who averaged 14 points per game this season, did not play in the contest due to an injury. Wagner ended its season with a record of 16-6.
P 12 22 41 57
W 18 31 47 53