Parkston head coach Rob Van Laecken might be getting a little more comfortable that the attention his team’s berth in the championship of the South Dakota State Class A Girls’ Basketball Tournament is affording him.
After his standard “you don’t need to talk to me,” response, he opened up a little — and even had some fun with the media.
Van Laecken started telling the gathered media about a team camp the team took at the University of Notre Dame, the one where they got the “Play Like A Champion Today” T-shirts the team wore for warm-ups before Friday night’s 72-71 victory over Miller. He then stopped himself and said, “I’ll tell you that one tomorrow night.”
The team continued its confident play in pressure situations, surviving a Miller flurry to win in the closing seconds. Now only top-seeded and de facto home team St. Thomas More stands between the Lady Trojans and their first-ever state basketball title.
STM beat Parkston 58-38 at the Parkston Classic in December. But standout Marie Malloy pointed out that the Lady Trojans have already earned vengeance on one foe this post-season.
“We got our revenge on Wagner,” she said. Wagner, which was unbeaten prior to Parkston’s come-from-behind win in the District 10A final, had beaten the Lady Trojans by 10 in January. “Hopefully we can get our revenge on St. Thomas More.”
Chynna Stevens, Clark-Willow Lake: Posted 22 points, 14 rebounds in a loss to Pine Ridge.
Caitlin Duffy, St. Thomas More: Posted 17 points, 11 rebounds, 3 assists in win over Elkton-Lake Benton.
Marie Malloy, Parkston: Had 24 points, 8 rebounds, 5 steals in win over Miller.
Alexis Watts, Miller: Had 21 points, 14 rebounds in loss to Parkston.
FRIDAY’S STAT LEADERS
POINTS: Marie Malloy, Parkston 24; Chynna Stevens, CWL 22; Anissa Martin, Pine Ridge 21; Alexis Watts, Miller 21; Erica Herrold, Parkston 19
REBOUNDS: Chynna Stevens CWL 14, Alexis Watts, Miller 14; Caitlin Duffy, STM 11; Megan Krogman, ELB 10; Tara Parmely, Miller 9; Jansen Hunter, Miller 8; Jordyn Kirk, Sisseton 8
ASSISTS: Janelle Paulson CWL 6, Tara Parmely, Miller 5; Hallie Fulton, Miller 4; Mallory Fischer, Miller 4; Brooke Pond, Pine Ridge 4; Santana White Dress, Pine Ridge 4
SCORING: Marie Malloy, Parkston 25.5 ppg; Caitlin Duffy, STM 22.5; Alexis Watts, Miller 20.5; Mackenzie Huber, CWL 17; Erica Herrold, Parkston 16.5
REBOUNDS: Chynna Stevens, CWL 13.5; Marie Malloy, Parkston 10.5; Caitlin Duffy, STM 9.0; Alexis Watts, Miller 9.0; Erica Herrold, Parkston 7.5
ASSISTS: Mallory Fischer, Miller 6 apg; Caitlin Duffy, STM 4.5; Tara Parmely, Miller 4.5; Janelle Paulson, CWL 4.0; Brooke Pond, Pine Ridge 3.5