By Michael S. Hoey


The Lake Geneva Badger girls basketball team defeated Westosha Central 61-35 at home on Dec. 18. The Badgers took control early and led by as many as 34 points in the blowout win.

LuAnnabelle Wieseman put the Badgers up 2-0 with a basket. Centyral took its only lead on the game on a three-pointer by Ellie Witt. The Badgers then used their relentless defense to keep Central at three points until they had built up a 22-3 lead. A steal and a basket by Ashlyn Welch put the Badgers up by 27 at 31-4, their biggest lead of the first half. Badger led 44-18 at the half with Chloe Wright hitting a three-pointer just before halftime.

The Badgers did not let up in the second half. Last week the Badgers led in Elkhorn by 17 with a strong first-half performance but the Elks cut the lead all the way down to two in the second half. There would be no such comeback on this night. The Badgers came out and pushed the lead to 49-18 quickly in the second half and the Falcons (0-9, 0-4 Southern Lakes Conference) never mounted a challenge.

Jada Moss led the Badgers with 13 points. Wieseman added 12 and Wright had ten.

The Badgers did not have things so easy in a non-conference road match-up at Janesville Craig on Dec. 20. The Badgers fell 61-48.

The Badgers struggled early as the Cougars (3-4) stepped in front of errant Badger passes on three consecutive possessions on their way to an early 10-4 lead. Emily Pierson, who led the Cougars with 25 points, hit two three-pointers during that stretch.

Badger came back with a 7-0 run fueled by five points from Wieseman to take a very brief 11-10 lead. It was the only lead the Badgers would enjoy all night. Craig used a 17-4 run to go up 27-15.

Moss, who led the Badgers with 20 points, tried to get the Badgers back into it with eight points after that in the first half, but Pierson hit two more three-pointers, including a very deep one, and Craig led 33-25 at the half.

The Badgers cut the lead all the way down to three at 38-35 on a three-pointer by Ava Schulz and a basket by Moss, but that was as close as it would get. A few minutes later the Cougars were up 55-39 as the result of a 17-4 run and the game was out of reach.

Wieseman added 11 points to Moss’ 20. Craig got 16 from Claudia Fieiras to go with Pierson’s 25.

The Lady Badgers (7-4, 4-1 SLC) host Oconomowoc (3-6) on Friday.

Boys also split two

      The Badger boys picked up their second win of the season 77-66 at home against Kenosha Indian Trail (5-3, 3-1 in the Southeast Conference) on Dec. 17.

“We had two focuses, stop their two leading scorers and possess the ball for great lengths of time on offense,” Coach John Witte said of how the Badgers competed so well against a first-place team.

“Our guys executed that game plan very well in the first half, which allowed us to jump ahead early,” Witte said.

Witte said Christian Johnston played great defense against Indian Trail’s point guard and that frustrated their whole team. The rest of the team played great defense as well, Witte said.

The Badgers led 38-20 at the half. In that first half, Indian Trail took a brief 2-0 lead and then Badger took control eventually using a 14-2 run to go up 26-9. The Badgers took their largest lead of the first half at 36-17 on two free throws by Kale Rodgers.

The second half did not go so well. Witte said the Hawks came out and created havoc with their full-court defensive pressure in the second half leading to Badger turnovers. Indian Trial used an 11-2 run to cut the lead down to 40-31 to start the second half. Badger regained some momentum briefly, including a three-pointer by Ty McGreevy, but Indian Trail started another run that cut the lead all the way down to 52-50 with 8:32 to play.

The Badgers regained their composure and pushed the lead back up to 59-52, but the Hawks cut it to 59-56. Indian Trail was never able to tie the game or take the lead and Ezra Stargell helped the Badgers out by collecting two technical fouls down the stretch. DuMez made five of six free throws that results from those technical and the original fouls they were called for. DuMez made four of six free throws in the final two minutes.

“I am proud of how our guys kept their composure and continued to control the tempo of the game,” Witte said. “We were also able to hit free throws down the stretch to seal the game.”

Witte said the bench seemed to lift the team with heads always in the game and always being positive.

DuMez led the Badgers with a season-high 27 points. Spencer Bishop added 20 and Rodgers had 11.

The Badgers had a much tougher time against Elkhorn in a 77-50 loss on Dec. 21. Elkhorn led from start to finish and controlled the game from the very start. The Elks (6-1, 2-1 SLC) got off to a 20-9 start behind Luke Umnus, who had 16 points in the first half.

The Badgers struggled to score allowing Elkhorn to build the lead to 28-12. Elkhorn pushed the lead to 21 by halftime at 44-23.

The second half began ominously as Elkhorn scored two of the first three baskets, including a rim-shaking dunk by Nick Brown that put Elkhorn up 48-25. DuMez hit two free throws that results from a technical foul for hanging on the rim, but Elkhorn was off and running. The lead was pushed to 53-29 on a three-pointer by Devon Davey and the Badgers never seriously cut into that lead.

DuMez led the Badgers (2-5, 1-2) with 17. Bishop had 16. Umnus led the Elks with 21.

The Badgers will not play again until traveling to Wilmot on Jan. 8.

Wrestlers fight new weight rules

      The Badger wrestling team has struggled all season fielding a full line-up due to low numbers and difficulty in making weights. Badger lost to Waterford 48-19 on Dec. 20 and gave up 24 points just on forfeits.

Assistant Coach Hank Peters said the WIAA instituted new rules this year regarding what wrestlers can do to manage weight as a way to manage the negative stereotypes that sometimes come with the sport. He said some of the team did not manage their weight well enough for the initial weight certification, so the Badgers have been unable to fill all the weight classes.

The Badgers have also had some injuries that have they have been nursing. Peters said it is more important that they are able to perform when it counts at the conference meet and the WIAA postseason than now.

After Christmas, the WIAA allows a two-pound growth allowance to each weight class, so it will become easier to qualify for weight classes and the Badges should be in better shape.

Against Waterford the Badgers did get victories by pin from Jake Stritesky at 126 pounds and Kyle Freund at 285. Patrick Keplar won by major decision at 195 pounds and Josh Stritesky won by decision at 106.

Swim loses to Elkhorn

      The swim team lost to Elkhorn 102-68 on Dec. 18.



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