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Lady Indians Advance to Championship Game

With a hard-fought win over Cheylin Friday evening, the Lady Indians advanced to the championship game of the Sagebrush Shootout Basketball Tournament. The Lady Indians led throughout most of the contest, but the outcome was still in doubt in the final seconds. Though the game was marred with numerous fouls and turnovers, the Lady Indians executed well enough to escape with a 46-43 win.

Jesie Frisbie (5' 11" Jr.) opened the contest with a left-wing basket. Karly Bandel quickly answered with a driving score. Taighe Weeter's lane basket gave St. Francis their first lead of the contest, but the advantage was short-lived as Josie Frisbie (5' 6" Jr.) drained a top-of-the-key trey to lead 4-5. Weeter's steal and coast-to-coast drive was followed by an offensive rebound basket by Soledad Bermudez (5' 8" Fr.). The score triggered a St. Francis time-out. Another offensive rebound score gave Cheylin a three-point lead. After a free-throw by Lindsey Johnson, Bermudez scored from the right-wing when the Lady Cougars secured an free-throw rebound on their own end of the floor. The lead (7-11) would be the largest the Cougars would hold in the contest. A free-throw by Lauren Johnson narrowed the margin to 8-11 just before the first quarter break.

St. Francis opened the second period with a driving score by Lauren Johnson. Taighe Weeter's steal/three triggered a Cheylin time-out at 7:32. The Lady Indians now led 13-11. After the time-out, Cheylin added an offensive rebound basket by Jesie Frisbie tying the contest. The Lady Indians' pressure defense was gradually taking a toll, and the number of Cheylin turnovers continued to increase. Soon, St. Francis received a fast-break basket by Emileigh Dinkel and a left-wing trey by Hanna Bracelin. Lauren Johnson's steal and assist led to another Weeter score. With the addition of a nice give-and-go basket from Reagan Beims to Bracelin, the score quickly ballooned to 22-13 with 6:00 minutes remaining in the half. The run ended with consecutive free-throws by Bermudez. After an assist by Bracelin led to a Dinkel basket, Grace Sabatka (5' 6" So.) swished a top-of-the-key trey narrowing the advantage to 24-18. The half ended with the Lady Indians up 26-18 after the addition of a basket by Lindsey Johnson (assist Lauren Johnson).

The Lady Indians scored the first basket of the second half on an assist by Lauren Johnson to a cutting Reagan Beims. A free-throw by Hanna Bracelin and a left-wing basket by Karly Bandel (assist Lauren Johnson) moved the scoreboard to 31-18. Sabatka responded with a right-wing trey narrowing the margin to ten points. At the opposite end, a low-high post pass by Beims led to a Bracelin basket from the high post. On the next possession, Rachel Keltz (6' 0" Sr.) scored in the post. Executing press offense well, the Lady Indians answered on a pass from Bracelin to Beims. Keltz's post basket on the next Cheylin possession maintained the ten point margin. Cheylin would follow with a free-throw by Jesie Frisbie and a drive by Josie Frisbie. The flurry narrowed the advantage to 35-28. St. Francis led 37-28 after Taighe Weeter scored from the left-wing on an out-of-bounds play.

The 9-point lead had been difficult to attain. Maintaining it, would be even harder. Though Hanna Bracelin made a free-throw early in the final period to widen the margin to ten (38-28), Cheylin was determined to continue to fight. A post basket by Jesie Frisbie was followed by a post basket by Rachel Keltz (plus one). By 6:35, the Lady Cougars had trimmed the margin to 38-33. St. Francis needed a basket--and they earned one on a Bracelin assist on a cut by Taighe Weeter. Josie Frisbie soon answered on a break basket. Bracelin drained consecutive free-throws and Reagan Biems' assist to Weeter on press offense gave the Lady Indians a 44-35 lead with 3:15 to play. Cheylin called time-out with 3:04 remaining and returned to the floor to score back-to-back baskets by Keltz (post) and Grace Sabatka. The scores closed the Lady Indian advantage to 44-39. St. Francis had multiple opportunities to seal the game at the free-throw line, but only made 2 of 5 from the stripe in the final minutes. Lauren Johnson and Karly Bandel each made one free-throw in the closing minutes. Bandel's free-throw (at 42.1 seconds) came after a steal by Lauren Johnson when the Lady Indians went to a delay offense. After the miss on the 2nd free-throw attempt, Johnson recovered the rebound, but the Lady Indians committed a turn-over at 27.3. With 15 seconds left, Keltz scored in the lane again moving the score to 46-41. After a Cheylin time-out, the Lady Indians committed another turnover. Keltz's post basket with 1.2 seconds trimmed the lead to 46-43. The teams had battled hard, and St. Francis had earned a slim three-point victory.

St. Francis was led in scoring by Taighe Weeter with 15 points. Hanna Bracelin added 11 and Karly Banel 5. Emileigh Dinkel, Lauren Johnson, and Reagan Beims each chipped in 4 points. Lindsey Johnson scored 3. St. Francis was 8 of 17 from the stripe.

Rachel Keltz led the Lady Cougars in scoring with 15 points (13 in the 2nd half). Jesie Frisbie added 9, Grace Sabatka 8, Soledad Bermudez 6, and Josie Frisbie 5. Cheylin only connected on 4 of 13 from the line.

The Lady Indians will now play Golden Plains in the championship game in the South Gym at Brewster High School on Saturday, December 9, at 5:30 p.m.

Hanna Bracelin will also be shooting in the finals of the free-throw and three-point contests on Saturday. Hanna made 18 of 25 free-throws in the opening round of the free-throw contest to qualify. Hanna made 8 treys in the three-point shooting contest to qualify for the finals.

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St. Francis 100 College Street St. Francis, KS  67756

Superintendent's Office: 785-332-8182 High School Office: 785-332-8153 Elementary Office: 785-332-8143

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