WASHINGTON TWP. | The title stayed home on Saturday night as host Washington Township cruised to the Mid-Winter Classic title.
Playing in the title game inside James W. Dold Gymnasium, the Senators never trailed en route to a 43-26 win over LaCrosse.
Heather Burton led all scorers with 14 points for Washington Twp., and was named the tournament’s Most Valuable Player.
“She’s a gamer,” Senators coach Chris Tomcsi said. “I’ve been saying since the start of the season to anyone that will listen that she’s an all-area caliber player. Hopefully, with the team success, she starts to get that level of recognition.
“What’s she done offensively — which she’s been doing for the past two seasons — she’s continued to do for us and sometimes she even sacrifices some of her own stats to get her teammates involved, and that’s great. But more importantly, she’s picking up on the defensive end. She’s become a more all-around player.”
LaCrosse’s effort to get the ball inside was stymied by strong perimeter defense. When the Tigers passed the ball down low, they were often successful. Callie McDougal led LaCrosse with 11 points and sophomore Katie Vance added 10.
“There were times they were able to get the ball inside, and that’s what they were trying to do. Coach (Brian) McMahan does a great job with his girls and their posts are strong,” Tomcsi said. “It was a good test for our post players. I felt like LaCrosse was able to get the ball inside at times and when they did, it gave us trouble.”
Washington Twp. was plagued early by turnovers, especially traveling violations.
“The turnover thing is something we’ve been dealing with all season,” Tomcsi said. “Obviously, we’re going to try to keep cleaning that up. When they’re forced turnovers, I can live with that when it’s against good defense. But unforced travels and those things, that’s just discipline and patience.
“I think that’s what it was, just a lack of concentration. Playing two games in one day does take it out of the girls. Naturally, little things like that are going to happen. It’s something we have to clean up.”
South Central beat Westville 81-12 in the consolation game. Katelyn Tucker led the Satellites with 15 points, while Jill Rosenbaum added 11 and Riley Popplewell poured in 10.
Others on the all-tournament team were South Central’s Rosenbaum, Westville’s Stephanie Popp, LaCrosse senior McDougal and Washington Twp.’s Sammie Higgins.