Irish girls' basketball falls at Hastings in section quarterfinals
The fifth-seeded Rosemount Irish girls' basketball team had No. 4-seed Hastings Raiders on the ropes Wednesday night, Feb. 28, in Hastings but were not quite able to pull off the upset, losing 54-50. Rosemount is vastly improved since the last time they played Hastings back in December, when the Raiders beat the Irish by 21. Since then, the young Rosemount squad has matured and improved, giving Hastings perhaps much more than they expected.
Hastings started the game off with a quick lead after forcing a couple turnovers and making a few threes. However, Rosemount responded and midway through the first half the Raiders led by just two, 12-10. With five minutes left in the half, the Irish tied it at 17 after sophomore Taylor Janssen hit a three. Hastings led 24-21 at halftime but Rosemount was able to slow down the duo of Mallory Brake and Krystal Carlson in the post. Anytime either of them got the ball in the post, the Irish brought a double or even triple-team to force them into a quick decision of whether to shoot or pass out. While both players were still able to get theirs, the Irish were able to force them to pass the ball out to the perimeter enough to limit their effectiveness in the first half.
Rosemount got off to a sluggish start in the second half which allowed Hastings to extend their lead to 37-25. Turnovers troubled the Irish throughout the game, but especially for much of the second half. However, they were able to make a comeback and force Hastings into some quick decisions with their press that resulted in the Raiders turning the ball over or taking bad shots. The Irish were able to cut the deficit to 41-37, but then Hastings responded with a run of their own to make it 48-41 with a couple minutes left. Rosemount battled the rest of the game, making it a one-score game in the last minute, but were unable to get the win.
Freshman Helen Staley led the Irish in scoring with 16 points, much of which came from the foul line in the second half to keep Rosemount close. Janssen had 12 points, while sophomore Larisa O'Neil added nine and senior Rose Bauernfeind had five.
Check back later for comments from players and head coach Chris Orr.