THE CITY REBORN FROM THE ASHES OF AMERICA'S MOST DISASTROUS FOREST FIRE
Rangers Defeat Tigers/Fall To Newman in Sectionals
Issue Date: March 7, 2019
Last year, the Wausaukee Rangers fell in the sectional by one point to the Gillett Tigers. A total of 41 years ago, their coach Dave Messar lost as a player in sectionals.
"I said, "history cannot repeat itself. Let's go out and do it tonight,'" Messar said in a state of euphoria after the game. "I've waited for this my whole life."
Wausaukee didn't exactly come out firing, but the Rangers were able to flip the script, defeating the Gillett Tigers 44-35 Thursday night.
Wausaukee led just 16-14 at the half, with senior Natalie Schroeder making a big momentum-swinging shot at the buzzer to take a lead into the break.
Wausaukee came out of the halftime by making five of eight free throws to extend its lead to 27-18 with about 11 minutes to go. Wausaukee would score 14 of its 28 points in the second half on free throws.
Gillett hung around and actually took the lead at 33-32 with 4:55 to go. Gillett made eight of 10 free throws in the final minutes to get the win.
"That's a mark of a winning team. You've got to make free throws," Messar said. "You miss them, you give them an open opportunity to come down and chisel that lead and we just kept building."
Messar said that no team deserved the sectional semifinal win more than his players.
"Awesome win," he said. "Great team effort tonight. So happy and proud of these kids. They worked their tails off."
Junior Madelyn Schlies led all scorers with 17 points and Schroeder, a senior, scored 16. Senior Courtney Messar chipped in seven.
Gillett didn't have any seniors.
"I'm proud of my girls. We battled, we're a young basketball team and we're bringing everything back," Gillett coach Justin Daul said. "There's nothing they should hang their heads about. They handled the situation with class and dignity and I'm proud of them."
Karissa Schaal scored a team-high 13 for Gillett and Aubrey Debauch scored nine.
"They did a great job stopping who I think is probably the player of the year in the conference in Audrey," Daul said of the Rangers. "They did a great job of shutting her game down. She still ended up with nine points."
Gillett hung around, but it had a tough time with the size and speed of Wausaukee.
"They're a tough matchup, because it's hard to match their athleticism along with the height," Daul said.
Wausau Newman Ends Wausaukee Post Season
The tri-conference champion Wausaukee Ranger girls found their playoff trail come to an end Saturday afternoon in Wausau as they were taken down by the Wausau Newman girls in a close 49-37 final verdict.
If it were not for a slow start, that saw the Rangers trailing 29-16 after one half of play, the Rangers were able to pick up the pace but still fell short with a 21-20 second half readout.
Newman was led by Shields who posted a 17 point effort to take top scoring honors. Her teammate Gonski posted 11 while Seidel got 10 on the night.
Wausaukee was led by Madelyn Schlies and Natalie Schroeder who both posted nine points each. Kaelyn Schlies added six to the total.