East Troy High School’s Isabella Rondeau sends the ball toward the basket in the Feb. 16 game against Brodhead. (Eric Kramer photo)

Boys head into regional action tonight

By Dan Truttschel

Correspondent

Playing short handed in a Wisconsin Interscholastic Athletic Association Division 3 regional opener last week wasn’t the best scenario for the East Troy High School girls basketball team.

But the Trojans certainly battled to the end.

East Troy trailed by just seven points at halftime at Clinton, but couldn’t pull any closer in a season-ending, 61-48 loss. The Trojans closed the year at 4-18 overall.

Clinton upset second-seeded Greendale Martin Luther, 47-45, in the regional semifinal, before it lost, 73-44, to third-seeded Lakeside Lutheran in Saturday’s regional final.

“We did play well, despite losing (leading scorer) Erin Rice and Ella Rondeau,” East Troy coach Maurya Lomen said. “Ella is a sophomore with great speed, and defensively, she has been able to help create some turnovers.

“Losing both her and Erin really showed the character of this team. The girls battled. It could have been easy to fold, but these girls just work so hard. Every possession, they battle. I couldn’t be more proud of them.”

Lomen said she used four freshman and junior Mackenzie Lindow on the floor at one point, and despite that youth, her team never quit.

“We battled, we competed, we took good shots,” she said. “I am beyond thrilled with all of their effort and their confidence.”

Addy Lomen led East Troy with 18 points, while Lindow added 13.

The play of her daughter was definitely a highlight, Maurya Lomen said.

“Addy works really hard all the time,” she said. “She does a lot of little things that go unnoticed, and often, her inexperience shows, but she and Mackenzie really played well together against Clinton. Addy is able to get open and has the confidence of a senior.

“I look forward to when she has the speed, size and maturity of a senior. I think she will be fantastic.”

The loss ended the East Troy playing career of one senior, Samantha Betley.

“(She’s) a great kid, coachable, a hard worker, a three-sport athlete, a high-level student,” Lomen said. “She is as sweet as can be. I wish I had four more years with her. Statistically, she didn’t always give us big numbers, but her desire to be the best that she can be is second to none. She will be missed.”

Lomen, who took over the program this year, said she was pleased with her team’s consistent improvement from start to finish.

“Our record is not indicative of how well this team competed,” she said. “From the tip to the final buzzer, despite the score, we competed hard. We have improved fundamentally, and this summer, we have a lot of enthusiasm to be in the gym by our underclassmen.

“If they put in the work they say they are going to, our future should be bright. The reality is that every team we played was led by at least one or two seniors. We lacked that depth, but next year, it will be entirely different.”

Results of All-Rock Valley Conference voting will run in a future edition

East Troy High School’s Ryan Nixon tips the ball in for two at the Feb. 19 game against Turner. East Troy faces either Turner or Shoreland Lutheran in Friday’s regional semifinal. (Eric Kramer photo)

Boys close with a flourish

The East Troy boys basketball team, which last week won the Rock Valley Conference title, closed the regular season Feb. 22 with a 104-56 win at Brodhead.

East Troy, which ended its regular season at 17-5 overall and 17-1 in the RVC, led 53-33, at halftime.

A.J. Vukovich led the way with 22 points, followed by Logan Mitchell with 19, Michael Polakoski with 18, Nick Bourdo with 13, Jered Brehm with 11 and Quinten Lottig with nine.

East Troy, the third seed in the Division 3 regional, will host either sixth-seeded Beloit Turner or 11th-seeded Shoreland Lutheran on Friday night. The winner of that game advances to a regional final Saturday against No. 2 Racine St. Catherine’s, No. 7 Kenosha St. Joseph’s or No. 10 Clinton.

 
 

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