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Midgettes stop Speedgirls


Jason Juno/Daily Globe

Hurley's Kaylyn King, right, and Bessemer's Rachel Mazurek try to corral a bad pass during Thursday's Indianhead Conference game at the House of Noise in Bessemer.

BESSEMER - Hurley put the finishing touch on its resume going into Saturday's seeding meeting with a 54-32 Indianhead Conference victory at Bessemer Thursday night.

The Midgettes took advantage of Bessemer turnovers in the first half for a 35-14 halftime lead. Bessemer was led by Whitney Trcka's 18 points, including 11 in the first half, but the shorthanded Speedgirls didn't get a field goal from someone else until midway through the third quarter.

"I think we sped them up; that was part of our plan," said Hurley coach Steve Eder, who will fight for a No. 1 seed in the WIAA Division 4 regional at Saturday's meeting. "Obviously anytime you can get turnovers, it leads to odd-person opportunities at your basket. We were fortunate enough to get those turnovers and get those opportunities and capitalize on them. That's big. Anytime you can do that, it's deflating to the other team. When they turn the ball over and you score right away, it puts a damper on what they want to do offensively."

The game was still close early in the second quarter as Hurley led 17-12 with 5:36 to go. The Midgettes, though, ended the period on an 18-2 run for a commanding 35-14 advantage.

Six different Midgettes scored in that run; they made two 3-pointers and were effective inside. The Speedgirls, though, didn't get many shots off due to the turnovers.

"They made their shots under 5 feet; we didn't," Bessemer coach Richard Matrella said. "Whitney had (11) points, but they were from outside. We didn't do anything inside and we had some good shots. They did a ton. They were to take apart our zone, especially when we got into a little bit of foul trouble."

Bessemer continues to be shorthanded - that includes missing Caitlyn Pelissero to injury - and it hopes that improves in time for the tournament the first week of March.

"Hurley's a good team; I don't want to take anything away from them," Matrella said. "We're obviously not healthy. Even the girls who are playing aren't healthy.

"Not that we weren't putting forth the effort, but it was pretty evident towards the end of the half Hurley had control of the game and we hoped to come out in the second half and play better. And I thought we did."

Trcka provided offense when Bessemer needed it.

"She had 18 points, I didn't feel she forced stuff," Matrella said. "I thought she did stuff in the realm of the offense, which is good. We need her to do that."

Eder goes to the Division 4 seeding meeting Saturday. Hurley (16-4) and Athens (15-5) appear to be battling for the top seed. Athens is the defending regional champion. The top two seeds likely get first-round byes and second-round home games.

Colby (9-11), Phillips (6-10), Chequamegon (3-14) are the other teams in the regional.

"We have the best record in our regional," Eder said. "I'm sure I'm going to get the argument that they play in a tougher conference (Athens in the Marawood) and stuff like that. The Indianhead's not a slouch. Look at Gonzaga, they're the No. 2 ranked team right now. People say all the time they don't play anybody. Well, they think they play somebody and I think we play somebody. Come into a place like Bessemer and it's a tough place to play. Bessemer's a good team; they're scrappy and they get after it. Same goes with just about every team in the Indianhead.

"I like our chances."

Hurley finished the Indianhead season at 13-3 and it needs Mercer to beat Wakefield-Marenisco on Feb. 17 to win a share of the East Division title.

"And if not, there's nothing wrong with a three-loss record in the conference," Eder said.

Brittany Czarnecki led Hurley with 13 points and Gabby Pecotte scored 12.

Hurley's Kaylyn King and Tori Colassaco have been sick since Tuesday and Reggie Kelly was ill last week.

"Those three girls, you can just tell the determination and hard work that they have and how much they care about their teammates the way they worked tonight," Eder said. "All three did an excellent job."

Hurley (16-4, 13-3) heads to Northwestern Tuesday. Bessemer (11-7, 8-6) goes to Mercer Monday for a makeup game.

Hurley - Gabby Pecotte 12, Natalie Moon 8, Dani Irons 6, Brittany Czarnecki 13, Tianne Kuula 3, Tori Colassaco 2, Reggie Kelly 2, Maria Swartz 2, Kirkie Pecotte 6. FTs: 6-12. Fouls: 12. Fouled out: None. 3-pointers: Czarnecki 3, Kuula 1.

Bessemer - Allyson Metas 9, Valerie Rowe 2, Rachel Mazurek 2, Rachey Emery 1, Whitney Trcka 18. FTs: 6-8. Fouls: 13. Fouled out: None. 3-pointers: Trcka 3, Metas 1.

Hurley 13 35 49 54

Bessemer 7 14 20 32


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