Scintillating Start Propels #3 WHN Past Ortonville

Ten.

That’s how many of their first 11 shots Wheaton/Herman-Norcross knocked down to open Friday’s game against Ortonville.

That incredible number helped sparked a 20-2 run to open the game for the WHN Warriors.

The Warriors went to the low post early and often, feeding junior center Briona Edwards. She buried her first 6 shots in the first 5 minutes. This opened up space for stellar junior guard Emma Schmidt, as she made her first 5 shots, including 3 threes. Ortonville couldn’t get anything going on offense, as the Warrior defense picked up 9 first half steals and held the Trojans to just 31% shooting. The Warrior pressure defense kept the Trojans out of rhythm all game, as Ortonville struggled mightily to initiate plays outside of a basic set up to junior forward Madysen Stegner in the low post. The Warriors shot an insane 64% in the first half, assisting on 17 of their 18 makes to lead 40-16 going into the locker room.

In the second, Wheaton/Herman-Norcross slowed things down and relied on their highly efficient ball movement to open things up down low for junior forward Madi Braaten, who finished with 10 points on 5-7 shooting, 3 assists, 3 rebounds, and 3 steals. Ortonville kept leaning on Stegner, who had 15 points in the game. Senior Trojan guard Rachel Hoernemann had 8 points and played a very solid two-way game. Sophomore guard Haley Johnson had a key role in the second for the Warriors, finishing with 4 assists running the point for the majority of the half.

In the game, Wheaton/Herman-Norcross assisted on 25 of their 28 buckets. Their ball movement was fantastic, allowing their guards to pick apart the Trojan man-to-man defense and find wide open post isos for Edwards and Braaten and open shots on the perimeter for the WHN guards.

“It was the best we’ve passed all season,” said Warriors coach Tim Gail. He sang the praises of the Warrior offense, remarking that he felt very, very good about the way they played.

WHN picked up great games from Schmidt, Edwards (18 points, 6 rebounds, 2 assists, 1 steal), and junior guard Anna Rinke (5 points, 4 rebounds, 5 assists, and 4 steals). Overall, they shot 55% from the floor and 50% from three. The Warriors are now 22-0 on the year.

Wheaton/Herman-Norcross 63, Ortonville 34

By The Numbers:

WHN 63

Points: Schmidt 19

Rebounds: Schmidt 7

Assists: Schmidt 7

Steals: Schmidt 5

ORT 34

Points: Stegner 15

Rebounds: Stegner 5

Steals: Hoernermann 2, Stegner 2

Blocks: Stegner 1

Stats taken courtesy of Thomas and Michael Breach. Quote from Tim Gail recorded by Thomas Breach. Photo of Ortonville gym taken by Thomas Breach, © Thomas Breach 2017.

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