Rhinelander’s Ally Seefeldt (2) guards Medford’s Desirae Weissmiller (21) during the first half of a Great Northern Conference girls’ basketball game at the Jim Miazga Community Gymnasium Friday, Feb. 9. (Bob Mainhardt for the River News)
2/13/2018 7:31:00 AM Lady Hodags down Medford 62-51
Another strong second half gave the Rhinelander High School girls' basketball team a stranglehold on second place in the Great Northern Conference, and a boost in WIAA playoff seeding.
The Hodags exploded for 46 second-half points to rally past Medford 62-51 at the Jim Miazga Community Gymnasium.
The win locked the Hodags into second in the GNC with one game remaining in the regular season and helped Rhinelander earn a No. 5 seed for the WIAA tournament. The Hodags will open the playoffs at home against Waupaca next Tuesday.
Just as was the case three nights earlier at Tomahawk, Friday's win over Medford was a tale of two different tempos and two different halves.
Plagued by turnovers and struggling in a half-court contest, Rhinelander trailed 19-16 at halftime. Things turned when the Hodags' press took over in the second half and the speed of the game increased.
"We had a good run there. We started getting some turnovers, getting some baskets off of it," Clark said. "The nice thing about the press is it goes in spurts. Once you get some steals and baskets, it snowballs quickly. We had two really good spurts there ... That was probably the difference in the second half."
The Hodags quickly turned a three-point deficit into a double-digit lead. Medford kept within shooting distance thanks to a 25-point effort by Desiree Weissmiller, but the Hodags closed out the game from the foul line down the stretch.
It was a far cry from a rough first half for the Hodags, who had more turnovers (18) than points (16) at the break.
"We didn't shoot very well and we were slow on offense," Clark said. "There was really no action, no communication and it was pretty ugly the whole way. We were lucky to be down three points. Eighteen turnovers and no offense, fortunately for us they were turning it over too, that was an ugly first half."
Ally Seefeldt had 24 points to lead the Hodags. Kenedy Van Zile scored 14. Alayna Franson and Maddie Meyer scored six each for Rhinelander. Lainey Brunner scored 17 for Medford while Mandi Baker had seven.
The Hodags (12-9, 9-2 Great Northern) close out the regular season at Antigo on Friday.
Freelancer Bob Mainhardt contributed to this report.
Jeremy Mayo may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Northwoods River News | Walker Communications, LLC 232 S. Courtney Street, Rhinelander, WI 54501 | Office (715) 365-6397 | Fax (715) 365-6361
Corporate billing office: The Lakeland Times / Lakeland Printing Inc. | P.O. Box 790, Minocqua, WI 54548 | (715) 356-5236 | Fax (715) 358-2121 Members of the Wisconsin Newspaper Association, Wisconsin Community Papers, Rhinelander Area Chamber of Commerce, Minocqua Area Chamber of Commerce