By Paul Lecker
AUBURNDALE – Auburndale coach Scott Meidl wasn’t happy with the way the Apaches played, and he said neither was his team. But, as the old saying goes, a win is a win and they will take it.
Auburndale had problems at times with Newman’s pressure and had numerous traveling infractions in committing 23 turnovers. The Apaches only shot 39 percent from the field and were an awful 4 of 18 from the free throw line.
However, the Apaches made Newman look worse. Much worse, in fact, and they cruised to a 36-22 win in the Marawood Conference South Division girls basketball opener for both teams Friday night at Auburndale High School.
Auburndale’s stifling defense forced 22 turnovers and held the Cardinals to 6 of 34 shooting from the field. Newman did not make a field goal for the final 5 minutes of the first quarter, or any in the second quarter…or the third quarter.
Newman missed 23 straight field goal attempts before finally scoring again 45 seconds into the fourth quarter. In the meantime, Auburndale outscored the Cardinals 24-2 during that stretch of nearly 22 minutes to open up a 20-point lead.
“It seemed like it was going so bad and you looked up there at halftime and you only gave up eight points to Wausau Newman,” Meidl said. “The third quarter was great. We got the ball inside, we started pounding it in there. We did OK defensively, it helped that they were missing their shots certainly helped.
“The important thing is I’m not happy with it and the girls aren’t happy either. If we’re going to be complacent this year and happy with mediocrity, then things aren’t going to work out. But if I’m willing to work at it and the girls are willing to work at it, learn and get better, that’s our overall goal.”
The Apaches are now 5-0 overall and 1-0 in the conference, while knocking perennial conference-power Newman Catholic to 3-1 and 0-1 in the Marawood South.
Taylor Gotz scored 11 points, Shannon Yahnke added nine points and 10 rebounds, and Sylviann Momont came off the bench and had eight points and 12 rebounds for Auburndale.
The Apaches dominated the boards, holding a 37-22 advantage, largely due to Newman’s poor shooting. The Cardinals were 0-for-13 from 3-point range and shot 17 percent overall.
“It was a win, it wasn’t pretty, it wasn’t what we wanted,” Meidl said. “Maybe it’s a blessing in disguise. We’ll go back and look at the film. Some girls played tonight that don’t normally play – we had a couple of girls out – maybe we’ll all learn from this.
“We’ll find out where we have to go on press breaks, we’ll find out where we have to go on offense. How we have to help out each other. We had a lack of communication tonight, and that’s something that’s going to get us far later in the season.”
Auburndale has a nonconference game at Edgar next Tuesday before playing at Stratford next Friday. Stratford head into its Marawood South game at Newman Catholic on Tuesday also perfect at 5-0 and 1-0 in the conference.
(Hub City Times Sports Reporter Paul Lecker is also the publisher of MarshfieldAreaSports.com.)
Apaches 36, Cardinals 22
Newman Catholic 8 0 0 14 – 22
Auburndale 9 4 13 10 – 36
NEWMAN CATHOLIC (22): Lauren Fech 0-8 0-0 0, Hadleigh Baumann 0-3 1-2 1, Caitlin Deeton 1-6 0-2 2, Karina McGucken 2-4 2-2 6, Abbey Fox 1-3 0-0 2, Kaley Fech 1-3 1-4 3, Brogan Kimball 0-1 0-0 0, Laura Beilke 1-4 6-6 8, Taylor Jankowski 0-2 0-0 0. FG: 6-34. FT: 10-14. 3-pointers: 0-13 (Baumann 0-1, Fox 0-1, Beilke 0-1, McGucken 0-2, Deeton 0-2, L. Fech 0-4). Rebounds: 23 (Deeton 5). Record: 3-1, 0-1 Marawood Conference South Division.
AUBURNDALE (36): Ashley Peplinski 0-1 0-0 0, Allison Linzmeier 3-7 0-0 6, Cheyenne Karl 0-7 0-2 0, Jenna Peplinski 1-1 0-0 2, Sylviann Momont 4-5 0-1 8, Shannon Yahnke 4-8 1-6 9, Taylor Gotz 4-12 3-9 11. FG: 16-41. FT: 4-18. 3-pointers: 0-5 (Karl 0-4, A. Peplinski 0-1). Rebounds: 37 (Momont 12). Assists: 9 (Karl 6). Record: 5-0, 1-0 Marawood South.