Prior to Saturday night, the Yankton Gazelles girls’ basketball team lost the games they were “supposed” to lose and won most of the games they were supposed to win.
Saturday night, that changed.
While the Gazelles’ 30-28 victory over Sioux Falls Lincoln wasn’t the prettiest upset win I’ve ever seen, it was exactly what Yankton’s young team needed.
- No one player took control of the game, as they were led in scoring by three players with seven.
- They survived a rough stretch, a 16-0 run that spanned end of the second and start of the third quarters.
- They made plays down the stretch, with different players hitting big baskets all over the place.
- They survived adversity, as Laura Ekeren left the game due to injury and Mikala Hora fouled out.
The victory gave Yankton a 3-1 record in a four-game week, and victories in four of their last five games after an 0-3 start. Defense has been the resounding theme of that stretch, as their opponents averaged 36.8 points a game in Yankton’s four wins. Yankton has given up 50 or more points in all three of its losses.
The Gazelles will be challenged moving forward, as they hit the road for Sioux Falls Roosevelt, Rapid City Stevens and Rapid City Central this week, the middle of a five-game stretch against Greater Dakota Conference competition. None of those games will be easy but, if they can continue to trust each other, their coaches and their own abilities, this young team has a great opportunity to make the future come sooner than most people think.