In anticipation of a Friday night doubleheader against St. Peter, a team the Blue Earth Area girls fell to, 52-38, early in January, the maroon and gold unleashed their fourth victory in five games Thursday, rolling over Jackson County Central with a 62-47 win that boosted the Buccaneers to .500 on the season.
Sitting at 9-9 after the road win, their first since a 72-20 rout of St. James on Jan. 5, the Bucs enjoyed a 60-point night for the third time in the last month, rebounding from a lopsided loss to the highly touted Waseca Bluejays from earlier in the week.
With another chance at redemption Friday night, which marked the maroon and gold's sixth contest at Blue Earth Area High School over the team's last seven games, the Bucs prepared for a home stretch of matchups with LeSueur-Henderson (Feb. 6), St. James (Feb. 9) and Sibley East.
Blue Earth Area’s Caitlin Rorman, a sophomore forward for the Buccaneers, drives through Waseca defenders during the maroon and gold’s home loss to the Bluejays last week. Rorman and the Bucs sought a rebound in a doubleheader vs. St. Peter on Friday, Feb. 3, after battling Jackson County Central the night before.
Waseca 51, BEA 28
Ousting top-ranked Waseca on Friday, Jan. 27, was going to be no easy task for the Blue Earth Area girls, even if the Buccaneers entered the contest with a three-game winning streak on the basketball court.
The visiting Bluejays came into BEA High School having won seven of their last nine games and touting a 13-4 overall record, so Bucs head coach Al Cue knew the maroon and gold, winners of four of their last six, would be in for a challenge.
And despite 10 steals and a three-rebound advantage over Waseca over the course of the night, that challenge proved too steep to overcome for a Bucs squad that connected on just four of 24 first-half field goals and fell, 51-28.
The BEA girls stayed out of foul trouble early in Friday's showdown, as not a single Waseca player was sent to the free-throw line before the break. But four three-pointers by the Bluejays had the visitors on a roll, whereas the Bucs had only one player, sophomore forward Caitlin Rorman, score more than three points in the first half.
Trailing by a double-digit margin, 26-13, heading into the final 18 minutes of action, Cue's lineup without injured junior guard Alissa Norman stepped up, more than doubling its field-goal shooting percentage and grabbing 11 defensive rebounds compared to Waseca's five.
The resurgence, however, did not totally slow the offensive pace of the Bluejays, who hit another trio of three-pointers and got another four points off free throws to outscore the Bucs by 10 in the second half. Twenty-one total turnovers by BEA did not help the maroon and gold's cause.
Leading the Bucs' efforts in Friday night's loss were Rorman (12 points, 6 rebounds, 2 steals), junior forward Sofie Blair (5 points, 4 rebounds, 3 steals) and senior guard Samantha Barslou (3 points, 3 rebounds, 3 steals).
Junior center Lindsey Norman also had five rebounds for BEA, while her senior counterpart Ryanne Klabunde came down with four boards of her own.