Spartans hand New Richmond first loss (updated)
The win puts Superior at 3-2 overall, while the Tigers drop to 3-1.
“This is big,” said Phil Roe, head coach of the Spartans. “We started off our first two games winning and then played two really top-notch teams: Chisago Lakes and Grand Rapids.
“We thought this would be an even match-up, but it was to our advantage playing Chisago Lakes and Grand Rapids because we knew what it took extra to play hard and compete at the level that we did tonight as a team.”
The Spartans and Tigers traded 8-0 runs to start the game, with New Richmond jumping out to a fast lead before Superior bounced back to tie the score.
Ellie Leadstrom gave Superior its first point of the night with a free throw three minutes into the game. Chloe Kintop added a jumper from the left side three minutes later, and Superior followed with five quick points. Daisy White’s long two-pointer made it 8-5, and Madisen Myer completed a three-point play with 11:02 left in the half to tie the score.
New Richmond was held without a field goal for more than five minutes after leading 8-0.
“When you get in that situation you can panic and start trying to do too much, and the girls didn’t do that,” Roe said. “The biggest thing is we were playing a little bit on our heels on defense and not on our toes. Once we started pressuring and turning up the pressure, it completely changed the game.”
After Superior’s 8-0 run to tie, the game was tied again at 13-13 and 15-15 before a 7-0 spurt by the Spartans put Superior in front for good.
Natalie Olson gave Superior its first lead at 6:12 on a steal and layup. Leadstrom made it 19-15 with a pair of free throws, and Madison Newman’s 3-pointer from the right wing completed the run.
At halftime, New Richmond trailed 28-24.
Seven players scored for Superior in the opening half, but none scored more than five points.
“Every girl on the court knows that if they’re open they have to have confidence to shoot the ball,” Roe said. “You could see that girls off the bench, even the eighth or ninth person, they weren’t afraid to shoot when they were called upon.”
In the second half, the Tigers never cut Superior’s lead below three points. The Spartans outscored New Richmond 32-22 in the half, including 11-5 in the last five minutes.
As in the first half, Superior received points from a mix of players to close out the game. Leadstrom made a layup and two free throws, Kintop knocked down a 3-pointer, and Lauren Gray and Olson added one basket apiece.
For the night, Olson and Leadstrom both finished with 17 points to lead Superior. Olson made a trio of 3-pointers on the night and led a 12-5 run for the Spartans to start the second half. The senior scored eight of Superior’s points during the run.
“She’s definitely capable, and the girls really love her on the team,” Roe said. “She’s had kind of a string over the last couple of weeks of being on fire in practice and in games, and girls are looking for her. She’s shooting with a lot of confidence. One layup I don’t even know how she made with three girls guarding her. She’s just feeling it.”
Roe also praised Superior’s efforts to box out and rebound Friday. White, coming off the bench, gave the Spartans a spark on the boards.
“Daisy’s a great kid,” Roe said. “A lot of her work in the weight room is paying off. She’s explosive, and she’s just a tough kid. She’s going to fight, and a lot of girls don’t want to fight back — and I don’t blame them.”
White scored four points for Superior and Gray, also coming off the bench, added six points. Kintop finished with seven points, Myer had six and Newman had three.
Freshman Jessica Hagman led the Tigers with 18 points, and sophomore Kate Miller added 13 points.
Superior finished the game shooting 11-of-23 at the free-throw line, while New Richmond was 11-of-15.
New Richmond........................ 24 22 — 46
Superior................................. 28 32 — 60
New Richmond — Jessica Hagman 18, Kate Miller 13, Amelia Feuerer 7, Lorin Bauer 4, Mallory Kelly 4.
3-point goals — Hagman 3.
Superior — Natalie Olson 17, Ellie Leadstrom 17, Chloe Kintop 7, Madisen Myer 6, Lauren Gray 6, Daisy White 4, Madison Newman 3.
3-point goals —Olson 3, Leadstrom 2, Newman, Kintop.