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Gael girls lose heartbreaker

February 25, 2014
By JOSH MEYER sports@messengernews.net

BOONE - In the blink of an eye, the St. Edmond girls basketball team saw its state dreams dashed here Monday night.

Unable to seal the deal late, the sixth-ranked Gaels (21-3 overall) dropped a crushing 48-47 decision to Des Moines Christian in a Class 2A, Region 6 final.

Freshman Beth Zimmer's banked in triple at the buzzer was the game-winner for the Lions (20-4), who pulled off a seemingly improbable rally after trailing by seven points with just under 30 seconds left. Ironically, Zimmer also drained a three-pointer as time expired in Des Moines Christian's 41-38 regional semifinal victory over Van Meter.

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Down the stretch, SEHS missed a layup, committed a costly turnover and failed to convert on the front end of a one-and-one opportunity.

"We just weren't able to close it out," St. Edmond head coach Scott Messerly said. "I thought we played great for most of the game, but then we made a couple of mistakes at the end that kind of took the wind out of our sails. I never expected (Zimmer) to make that shot. What are you suppose to do?"

Point guard Jaci Stumpf, a junior, anchored the Gaels with 18 points, including 14 in the second half. Stumpf added seven assists.

Fact Box

DES MOINES CHRISTIAN 48,

ST. EDMOND 47

Des Moines Christian - Beth Zimmer 2-4 0-0 6, Brittany Zimmer 1-6 3-4 6, Christa Feldt 5-7 0-2 15, Elsa Anderson 3-19 1-2 8, Sara Juhl 6-8 1-2 13, Megan Stubbs 0-1 0-0 0. Totals: 17-45 5-10 48.

St. Edmond - Maddie McCarville 0-4 0-0 0, Jaci Stumpf 9-19 0-3 18, Anna Yung 2-9 0-0 4, Alli Huss 5-9 1-1 12, Madeline Baldwin 1-1 0-0 2, Clare Flattery 3-4 2-2 8, Brigid Hanley 0-0 0-0 0, Megan Flattery 0-0 0-0 0, Drue Specht 1-2 0-0 3. Totals: 21-48 3-6 47.

Quarter scores: St. Edmond led 14-8, 23-21, 35-30. Three-point goals: Des Moines Christian 9-20 (Be. Zimmer 2-4, Br. Zimmer 1-4, Feldt 5-7, Anderson 1-5); St. Edmond 3-6 (Stumpf 0-1, Yung 0-2, Huss 1-2, Specht 1-1). Total rebounds: Des Moines Christian 27, St. Edmond 28. Turnovers: Des Moines Christian 10, St. Edmond 8. Total fouls: Des Moines Christian 11, St. Edmond 9.

"We were able to spread the floor, and Jaci did a nice job of either driving to the hoop or taking jump shots," said Messerly.

then we made a couple of mistakes at the end that kind of took the wind out of our sails. I never expected (Zimmer) to make that shot. What are you suppose to do?"

Point guard Jaci Stumpf, a junior, anchored the Gaels with 18 points, including 14 in the second half. Stumpf added seven assists.

"We were able to spread the floor, and Jaci did a nice job of either driving to the hoop or taking jump shots," said Messerly. "Another big key for us was that we got solid minutes from our bench players like Clare (Flattery), Drue (Specht) and Brigid (Hanley)."

Senior Alli Huss also contributed 12 points for SEHS, while Flattery tallied eight. Before the break, St. Edmond led by as many as eight points on four different occasions. Christa Feldt's longball with 7:19 remaining in the third quarter gave the Lions their first edge of the contest.

"I thought we adjusted well to the foreign gym," Messerly said. "Our defensive effort was also pretty solid the whole way, too, especially in the second half after we made a switch on (6-foot-0 Elsa) Anderson."

On the final possession, a wild scramble ensued following a missed jumper by Des Moines Christian. The tipped ball ultimately ended up in Zimmer's hands at the top of the key for what proved to be the decisive hoop, sending the Lions into jubilation.

Feldt, a sophomore, netted 15 points for Des Moines Christian, while senior Sara Juhl chipped in 13. For the fifth straight game, the Lions were without the services of starting sophomore guard Ebby Prewitt (left ankle injury).

Huss and Maddie McCarville each wrapped up their careers for the three-time defending North Central Conference champion Gaels. Over the past four years, SEHS compiled a 78-12 record.

"Alli and Maddie were both captains and leaders that never caused any trouble," said Messerly. "They're special girls that'll definitely be missed next year. I was very lucky to have a chance to coach them."

St. Edmond's only state tournament appearance came in 1978, when it placed fourth.

Making its first-ever state trip, the Lions will now face No. 1 and two-time defending champion Western Christian (24-1) in a 2A quarterfinal on Tuesday. Tip is set for 10 a.m. at Wells Fargo Arena in Des Moines.

 
 

 

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