Newell-Fonda beats Panthers 81-40, will meet Rockwell City-Lytton in regionals.
NEWELL - The game was all about tempo.
Storm Lake St. Mary's knew they had to slow the game down in order to have a chance to win.
Newell-Fonda, on the other hand, knew they had to make it a game of transition.
Newell-Fonda was able to dictate the tempo, and as a result, the Mustangs won a district final game 81-40 over St. Mary's on Saturday night at Newell.
"I was very impressed with our girls' intensity," said Newell-Fonda coach Jody Maske. "Our pressure man-to-man defense caused their tempo tactics some problems. This was a very good St. Mary's team. If they are able to slow things down, they play some excellent ball. On the flip side of the coin, when we are able to get out and run, we play some excellent ball. Tonight, we ran."
Newell-Fonda, now 19-4, will play fourth-ranked Rockwell City-Lytton (22-0) in a regional semifinal game tonight in Rockwell City.
Newell-Fonda trailed 7-4 in the first quarter before scoring 11 unanswered points to take a 15-7 lead after the first quarter.
The Mustangs outscored the Panthers 29-11 in the second quarter to extend their lead to 44-18 by halftime.
A 19-7 third-quarter spurt gave the Mustangs a 63-25 lead heading into the fourth period.
Sara Larsen finished with 19 points, 10 rebounds, four assists and four steals to lead the Mustangs.
Jenny Scharn had 18 points and three steals, while Erin Kies added 14 points and three steals. Jen Schumann collected nine rebounds and Alicia Tiedeman four assists.
Megan Kestel led St. Mary's with 19 points, six rebounds and two assists. Kassie Drey added six points and two assists, while Michelle Drey grabbed four rebounds.
St. Mary's, which finished its season 14-9 overall, made 17 of 50 field goals for 34 percent. Newell-Fonda was 28 of 64 for 44 percent.
The Panthers were 5 of 17 from the free-throw line compared to 21 of 37 for Newell-Fonda.
"It was a tough way to end a magical season, but one loss can't eliminate that many accomplishments our girls had this year," St. Mary's coach Ryan Berg said. "I am very proud of all of our girls, especially the seniors."