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February 28, 2014

Yellowjacket Women's Basketball on to Championship!

Yellowjacket Women's Basketball team beat Whitewater Thursday 84 to 63 to make it into the Championship!

After dropping two hotly contested games to the UW-Whitewater Warhawks during the regular season, the UW-Superior women's basketball was determined not to experience another repeat Thursday night.

And that determination was on full display from the get go as the Yellowjackets took a big first half lead and held it for the rest of the game on the way to posting an emphatic 84-63 win over the Warhawks in their WIAC Conference Tournament Semifinal at Kachel Gymnasium.

With the win, the Yellowjackets not only improved to 16-11 for the season, they handed UW-Whitewater their first defeat against a WIAC member during the 2013-20124 season while also booking a ticket to the WIAC Championship game at UW-Oshkosh on Saturday.

The Yellowjackets took a sizable lead from nearly the beginning, getting a three-pointer from Britnee Blake (Superior, Wis./Superior Senior), two layups from Grace Kennedy (Wausau, Wis./Newman Catholic) and a jumper by Sally Linzmeier (Valders, Wis./Valders) for a 9-2 advantage with 16:31 left in the first half.

UW-Whitewater (22-4) cut the deficit to 20-18 on a driving layup by Andrea Olson with 10:37 left in the opening stanza.

The Yellowjackets came right back however, going on a 10-2 run over a 6:00 span of the half for a comfortable 36-22 lead following a jumper by Linzmeier with 2:30 left in the frame.

UW-Superior then got a jumper by Deandra Vavra (Cambridge, Minn./Cambridge-Isanti) and a three-pointer by Brynn Liljander (Isanti, Minn./Cambridge-Isanti) as time expired in the first half to take a commanding 41-25 edge into halftime.

The Warhawks attempted a rally early in the second half, cutting the deficit to 47-37 on a three-pointer by Reilly Stewart with 15:41 remaining in regulation.

But UW-Superior took control from there, steadily pulling away to a 73-51 lead on a layup by Vavra with 5:50 showing on the clock.

From there, the Warhawks never got closer than 16 points as the Yellowjackets shot a blistering 66.7 percent (18-of-27) from field in the second half and 57.8 percent (37-of-64) for the game.

Offensively, Linzmeier paced five Yellowjackets in double-figures with 21 points and 12 rebounds.  Hadley Skalmoski (Neenah, Wis./Neenah) added 13 points and nine rebounds while Vavra and Vanessa Lebens (Roseville, Minn./Roseville Area) each had 12 points and Kennedy finished with 10.

Kaitlyn Thill had 16 points for the Warhawks.  Abbie Reeves finished with 13 points for UW-Whitewater as well.

Opening tipoff against UW-Oshkosh is scheduled for 3 p.m. Saturday.  The game can be heard live on 91.3 FM KUWS with Matt Johnson on the call. - John Garver

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