LP girls ease to win; Athletics move on after first-round victory

Published 9:06 pm Thursday, February 22, 2018

LYLE — It was the end of an era for three seniors as top-seeded Lyle-Pacelli closed out Lyle gym for the year in a 64-21 win over No. 16 seeded Lanesboro (5-20 overall) to open the Section 1A girls basketball tournament Thursday.

LP seniors Brooke Walter, who had three points, four rebounds, four steals and seven assists, Kristi Fett, who had 17 points, 10 rebounds and three blocks, and Kendal Truckenmiller, who had three points, all stepped up in the win for the Athletics (26-1 overall). LP has lost just one game in Lyle over the last six years.

Lyle-Pacelli’s Brooke Walter looks for outlet during the first half against Lanesboro during a Section 1A Tournament game Thursday night in Lyle. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

“It’s crazy. I remember a lot of big games where our crowd was so loud and we had to put chairs on the stage,” Walter said. “Our fans and our support in this gym has been crazy and I’m going to miss it. Even when we played with the travelers team in this gym, we had a lot of support.”

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LP jumped out to a 16-0 lead to erase all doubt early on and it was able to clear the bench in the second half as it pulled away. The Athletics will play No. 8 Kingsland in the Section 1A quarterfinals in Mayo Civic Center in Rochester Tuesday at 6 p.m.

LP head coach Justin Morris said it was an emotional night for his seniors.

Lyle-Pacelli’s Krisi Fett puts a hand up in front of Lanesboro’s Emily Snyder during the first half of a Section 1A Tournament game Thursday night in Lyle. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com

“I think there was definitely a sentimental factor,” Morris said. “Kristi, Brooke and Kendal are all Lyle kids playing their last game in Lyle. They’ve had special careers and they’re excited [moving forward]. They’re ready to rock and roll.”

Olivia Christianson had 19 points, four rebounds, five assists and four steals for LP and Abby Bollingberg had 11 points, six rebounds and four assists.

The Athletics are now focused on bringing their best every night they take the court.

“We know we have to come out every game and play our best,” Walter said. “We have to take each game and each possession seriously. We have to play like we’re playing the best team in the state.”

Morris was recently named Section 1A coach of the year and Brad Walter was named Section 1A assistant coach of the year.

Lanesboro 10  11    21

LP 40  24    64

LP scoring: Olivia Christianson, 19; Kristi Fett, 17; Abby Bollingberg, 11; Lucy Nelson, 4; Brooke Walter, 4; Myra Kraemer, 3; Kendal Truckenmiller, 3; Kayla Christopherson, 2; Rachel Nelsen, 2; free throws: 66 percent (6-for-9); rebounds: 31 (Fett, 10); turnovers: 7

Lyle-Pacelli’s Kendal Truckenmiller works to get out of trouble in the first half against Lanesboro in a Section 1A Tournament matchup Thursday night in Lyle. Eric Johnson/photodesk@austindailyherald.com