The Lakeland girls’ and boys’ basketball teams hosted Tomahawk in a doubleheader at the Lakeland fieldhouse. It was both teams’ second conference game thus far.
The girls defeated Tomahawk 85-10 for their second conference win this season.
In a low-scoring game, the Hatchets edged out the boys for a 43-40 win.
Using their fast break to start the game, the Thunderbirds were able to get off to a hot start, leading 24-0.
“We just came out and did our normal attack mode for a little bit in the beginning and our press hurt them,” coach Melissa Ouimette said.
Once they got going, they toned it down a bit to work on their half court offense, something they can improve upon.
“We always start out with our fast break and get going and from there we toned it down a little bit and worked on our half court setting,” coach Ouimette said.
The lead grew as Lakeland led 49-4 with 4:31 left in the first half.
Another thing they worked on was a variety of defenses. They mixed and matched defenses to work on something new.
“We played different defenses tonight,” coach Ouimette said. “(We did some) 1-3-1, we did some man-to-man which we hardly ever play.”
On offense, the Thunderbirds were encouraged to work on taking advantage of new opportunities and run the offense.
“We pulled it out and ran an offense,” coach Ouimette said. “Sometimes we had 15-20 passes which is uncommon for us.”
Julianna Ouimette and Abby Parris led all scorers with 18 points apiece. Julianna Ouimette led the team with eight baskets as Parris tied for the team lead with two 3-pointers.
Hailey Curtis finished with 10 points and two made 3-pointers. Amaya White finished with 15 points and Vivian Trapp finished with six points.
“Everybody shared the ball,” coach Ouimette said. “We worked it around in the second half to a half court offense.”
Camille Quade had nine points, including three of four from the free throw line. Lacy Valliere added in three points and Joeli Koehler chipped in six.
“We worked on things we hardly every work on, make the girls better players tonight,” coach Ouimette said. “And work on some shots and driving opportunities that they don’t normally take to grow as a player.”
Their next game comes tonight at Medford starting at 7:15 p.m.
Turnovers were the issue all game for Lakeland. In total, they turned the ball over 28 times, giving Tomahawk chances to score.
“We set ourselves up for a bad ending by just not taking care of the basketball,” coach Rich Fortier said. “Twenty-eight turnovers is quite a few.”
When they did get a shot opportunity, they found it hard to score. They did not shoot like they had in their previous games.
“We didn’t take care of the ball, lot of turnovers, didn’t shoot the ball particularly well, didn’t shoot free throws well,” coach Fortier said.
In addition to the shooting, they only shot 33% from the free throw line.
The Thunderbirds defense kept them in the game. They led 27-22 at the half.
“Our defense really kept us in the game, kept us in shouting defense,” coach Fortier said.
Michael Ouimette led the team with 11 points, followed by Collin Quade with 10 points. Alex Fortier sank three more 3-pointers for nine points. Nolan St. Germaine finished with eight points.
The second half saw more struggles in the scoring department. The Thunderbirds mustered just 13 second half points, attributing that to more turnovers and bad shooting.
The Thunderbirds had a chance to tie the game at the end. Jacob Borak attempted a 3-pointer that did not fall.
“(We had) a 3 at the end to tie it and (Jacob) didn’t quite get it in,” coach Fortier said.
The Hatchets ended up outscoring the Thunderbirds 21-13 in the second half.
Even though it was a tough loss, coach Fortier will not let this defeat get his team down.
“There’s a lot of season left, no way we’re pulling the tents down,” coach Fortier said. “We’re coming back and getting after it and try to get back.”
Their next games come at a holiday tournament Friday, Dec. 27 and Saturday, Dec. 28 at Menomonie High School.
Brett LaBore may be reached at [email protected] or [email protected]