Goslings use 2nd half surge to beat Crusaders
Sophomore forward Teya Maas notched a game-high 17 points and senior forward Bri Korducki chipped in 11 as the Watertown girls basketball team used a 15-2 run in the opening minutes of the second half to top Edgewood 53-43 in a Badger South game at Watertown High School on Thursday for the team’s third consecutive victory.
The Goslings trailed by four points at halftime and built a 9-point lead in the first six minutes of the second frame behind stingy defense and points in the paint.
Korducki contributed eight points on the spurt, including putting back two offensive rebounds for baskets, and Maas scored the other seven points. Senior guard Jenna Koepp hit Maas on a long pass in transition to setup an easy layin to cap the run with 12 minutes, 34 seconds remaining before Edgewood called timeout.
“In the second half to come up and go on that run right away to kind of take control was big,” Watertown girls basketball coach Matt Stollberg said. “We’ve been pretty good playing with the lead ... They kept hitting some big shots to stay in it and really are a very talented team. They did a lot of nice things that gave our zone trouble and that we had to adjust to. The kids are really good at those adjustments and that really paid off for us in the second half. To be flat in the first half and score 17 and then score 36 in the second half is pretty impressive for the kids.”
Sophomore guard Aubrey Schmutzler hit a 3-pointer to give Watertown (11-4, 6-2 in conference) an 11-point advantage with 10 minutes remaining. Three minutes later, senior guard Payton Zubke buried a 3-point shot from the right wing to push the Gosling’s lead to 42-33.
Korducki found Maas on a pass from the high post for a layup to put Watertown ahead 44-36 before Edgewood (3-11, 1-7) scored five straight with 4:30 to play.
Zubke finished through contact and Schmutzler went hard to the rim for a layup to push Watertown’s edge to 10 points with 3:00 to go.
“We got a couple of transition buckets in there which helps,” Stollberg said. “Payton Zubke when we desperately needed points hit a 3-pointer in the first half and in the second half she hits a corner three at the perfect moment to answer an Edgewood run. Off an inbounds play she gets fouled on an and-1 and scores there too. She’s a defensive player for us for the most part. For her to all of sudden find a way to lift us up offensively was awesome.”
Schmutzler totaled nine points and Zubke and Koepp each finished with seven.
Watertown sits a half game behind each Monona Grove and Stoughton in the Badger South. The Silver Eagles and Vikings play today in Stoughton with the winner taking sole possession of first place in conference with a 7-1 mark.
Edgewood scored the game’s first seven points and the Crusaders’ Baluck Deang had 10 of her team-high 14 in the opening half.
Edgewood routinely double-teamed Maas in the post to minimize her offensive production. The strategy was more effective in the first half as Watertown scored 36 second-half points and didn’t allow a slow start to keep them down.
“Teya is such a good passer she is able to find people off the help (defense),” Stollberg said. “For Bri, she got us the lead with pure hustle plays. Same thing with Aubrey, whenever we need something or are in trouble we get a deflection on defense, get a steal or an offensive rebound. That’s something you can’t teach in desire and effort. We have kids who play super hard. In the second half, it was a lot of effort. They weren’t going to accept that it was going to be an off night. They were going to find a way to win and we’re really proud of them for that.”
Edgewood’s Lindsey Langlois scored all nine of her points from 3-point range and Amber Grosse also finished with nine.
Watertown travels to face Menomonee Falls in a nonconference game on Saturday at 3 p.m.
JV, JV2 lose: Watertown’s JV team lost 62-55 despite 24 points from Sydney Linskens. The JV2 squad fell 37-31 and Sydney Bolden supplied 17 points.
WATERTOWN 53, EDGEWOOD 43
Edgewood 21 22 — 43
Watertown 17 36 — 53
Edgewood (fg-ft-tp) — Moore 1-0-2, Langlois 3-0-9, Deang 7-0-14, Grosse 2-4-9, Olson 2-0-5, Lazar 2-0-4. Totals 17 4-5 43.
Watertown (fg-ft-tp) — Zubke 3-0-7, Koepp 1-4-7, Gifford 1-0-2, Schmutzler 4-0-9, Korducki 5-1-11, Maas 5-7-17. Totals 19 12-21 53.
Three-point goals — E, Langlois 3, Grosse, Olson; W, Zubke, Koepp, Schmutzler.
Total fouls — E 17, W 9.