Marshfield girls basketball overcomes slow start to rout Wisconsin Rapids
By Paul Lecker
MARSHFIELD — The Marshfield girls basketball team got off to a strong start to the season, winning nine of its first 10 games.
However, the Tigers were just 4-4 since winning their home tournament Jan. 2-3 and following a one-point loss at Stevens Point last Friday, came into Tuesday’s game against Wisconsin Rapids a little sluggish.
Marshfield trailed by six points three minutes into the second quarter before a switch to a full-court press invigorated the Tigers.
Marshfield used a 16-1 run to end the first half to take control and roll to a 54-34 victory over the Raiders at Marshfield High School.
After missing 11 of its first 14 shots from the field and committing seven turnovers, Marshfield fell behind 12-6 before it got things going with an impressive run to close out the first half.
The Tigers forced four-straight turnovers and held Wisconsin Rapids to just one free throw over the final six minutes to forge ahead.
Two 3-pointers by McKayla Scheuer, a three-point play from Ellie Kummer, and three points by Hannah Meverden turned the six-point deficit into a 22-13 halftime lead.
“We changed up our defense a little bit, and it just comes down to playing harder,” Marshfield coach Heidi Michaelis said. “If you’re content to run up and down with a team and not do anything different, you’re going to have a first quarter like we did. In the second quarter we pressed and got some easier looks.
“We have to work so much harder to get baskets than the other team we’re playing. We got some easy ones. I thought we played well in stretches and were able to do what we wanted to do.”
Marshfield (14-5 overall, 6-3 Wisconsin Valley Conference) continued its solid play in the third quarter, outscoring Rapids 20-6 over the final 6:50. Two 3-pointers by Caitlin Michaelis and a three-point play and 3-point shot from Scheuer pushed Marshfield out to a 42-19 lead.
Michaelis finished with 16 points, Scheuer added 12, and Kummer had 10 for the Tigers.
Wisconsin Rapids (7-11, 4-6 WVC) ended up making just 11 of 30 shots from the field and turned the ball over 22 times against a Tigers’ defense that controlled play in the second half.
With dreams of a conference title out the window, the Tigers now have to refocus. Marshfield has three games remaining in the regular season, starting with a game at Merrill on Friday, and wants to peak heading into the WIAA postseason which beings Feb. 27.
“You could tell that there’s a disappointment,” Heidi Michaelis said. “It’s up to us coaches to make them understand that the pieces are still there and you only have to make one run. We definitely have yet to play our best basketball, and that’s a good thing. You can tell that we’re down a little bit. It’s just a matter of getting them on the same page.
“I’m looking for good things to finish the season, and I think there are a bunch of kids that do as well.”
(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Tigers 54, Raiders 34
Wisconsin Rapids 9 4 11 10 – 34
Marshfield 6 16 22 10 – 54
WISCONSIN RAPIDS (34): Kendra Kysne 2-9 0-0 6, Maycie Wiernik 2-5 2-4 8, Lizzy Keena 0-1 0-0 0, Kaitlyn Hess 0-1 0-1 0, Chani Pulchinski 1-5 4-6 6, Alyssa Huglen 1-2 0-0 2, Morgan Saeger 0-0 0-0 0, Victoria Hansen 5-7 2-5 12. FG: 11-30. FT: 8-16. 3-pointers: 4-10 (Wiernik 2-4, Lysne 2-6). Rebounds: 23 (Hansen 10). Turnovers: 22. Fouls: 13. Fouled out: none. Record: 7-11, 4-6 Wisconsin Valley Conference.
MARSHFIELD (54): McKayla Scheuer 4-9 1-1 12, Meg Bryan 1-2 2-2 5, Caitlin Michaelis 6-16 2-4 16, Ana Jensen 0-0 0-0 0, Natalie Zuelke 0-0 0-0 0, Maddie Nikolai 0-1 0-0 0, Martha Kupfer 1-1 0-0 2, Ellie Kummer 4-8 1-1 10, Jenny Scheppler 0-0 0-0 0, Ema Fehrenbach 1-3 4-6 6, Hannah Meverden 1-4 1-2 3. FG: 18-44. FT: 11-16. 3-pointers: 7-18 (Scheuer 3-6, Michaelis 2-7, Kummer 1-3, Bryan 1-2). Rebounds: 22 (Meverden 7). Turnovers: 10. Fouls: 14. Fouled out: none. Record: 14-5, 6-3 Wisconsin Valley Conference.