Brodhead girl's basketball team one win from state
JANESVILLE--The Brodhead Cardinals smelled blood.
Trailing by five, they were 11 minutes away from their season ending in a WIAA Division 3 sectional final game, again. But Brodhead also knew two of Whitewater’s top players were on the bench in foul trouble.
“I think there actually was blood,” Brodhead senior Carly Mohns joked, alluding to the fast-paced, physical style of play.
The Cardinals used a 12-2 run to take the lead and never trailed again in a 47-42 victory over the Whippets on Thursday night at Janesville Parker. Mohns scored 18 of her game-high 22 points in the second half.
Brodhead (25-0) will take on Adams-Friendship (23-1) in a sectional final game at 7 p.m. on Saturday at Middleton. The Cardinals will attempt to advance to the state tournament for the first time in program history.
“Last year, I think we got stopped earlier than we wanted to, so it made us hungry,” said Mohns, whose team lost to Lodi in a sectional semifinal a year ago. “It was kind of hard for us to settle down, but once we did, I thought we did a good job of staying in it and just keep pushing.
“We weren’t going to give up like last year.”
Neither team settled in during a frenzied and often sloppy first half, and the Whippets led 14-11 at the break.
They tilted momentum in their favor by attacking inside during the heart of the third quarter. Senior Brooke Trewyn hit two free throws and freshman Rebekah Schumacher made buckets on back-to-back base-line drives to put Whitewater up 22-17 with about three minutes left.
“We had it right there,” Whitewater coach Judy Harms said. “And then as quick as we had it, we lost it.”
Trewyn—the program’s all-time leading scorer whose only two points came on the aforementioned free throws—and freshman forward Myriama Smith-Traore were seated for the rest of the third quarter due to fouls. Whitewater was whistled for 21 of them overall; Brodhead was called for 12.
“The foul situation was really, really frustrating tonight, because I thought some of them were not fouls,” said Harms, who couldn’t remember a time where Trewyn went without a field goal in a game. “But at the same time, I make mistakes as much as that crew.”
The Cardinals took advantage of the Whippets’ woes, forcing three turnovers and scoring 12 points in a two-minute span to take a five-point lead of their own.
“Smith-Traore was in foul trouble, and we didn’t take advantage of that (in the first half),” Brodhead coach Brad Pickett said. “But when Trewyn got in foul trouble in the third, we took advantage.”
Whitewater never led again, though it did tie the game three times in the fourth quarter. The final time came when junior Kailey Reynolds made a 3-pointer with less than 2:30 to play, making it 37-37.
But Brodhead senior Meg Duffield had the instant answer, burying a 3-pointer in the corner out of the press break to give the Cardinals the lead for good.
“My coach just kept telling me to shoot,” said Duffield, whose corner 3 led the Cardinals to an overtime victory over Whitewater during the teams’ only regular-season meeting. “(It’s best) when I don’t think about it, I guess. They’re a very good team.”
Reynolds led the Whippets with 13 points and junior Sarah Schumacher added 11. Harms credited the Cardinals’ defensive effort on Schumacher and Trewyn, but she also saw her team attempt just four free throws.
Brodhead missed 10 free throws but made 28 trips to the line, and it was 11 of 14 when it mattered most in the fourth quarter.
The Cardinals will take their unblemished record to Middleton to face once-beaten Adams-Friendship. The Green Devils have won 21 straight since losing to Aquinas on Dec. 9.