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Clear Lake girls overcome bumpy start to win regional tournament opener
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Clear Lake girls overcome bumpy start to win regional tournament opener

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Some girls basketball coaches may have concerns when their team falls behind 7-0 to start a game.

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Clear Lake's Kaitlyn VanderPloeg (#34) attempts to block GHV's Liz Richardson (#14) at a game on Saturday, Feb. 15.

Clear Lake girls coach Bart Smith may not have been happy with such a start in the Lions’ Class 3A regional opener against Garner-Hayfield-Ventura on Saturday, but he also knows the runs that his Lions are capable of.

That is exactly what Smith saw as second-rated Clear Lake stormed ahead and moved on with a 57-46 win over the Cardinals.

“Good teams are going to defend you,” Smith said. “You’ve got to be ready to go.”

G-H-V jumped on the Lions quickly before a pair of Sara Faber free throws nearly three minutes into the game got the Lions on the board.

Those free throws sparked a 20-2 run over the remainder of the first quarter and the early stages of the second quarter.

Clear Lake added another 12-0 run at the end of the third quarter, a spree that was largely sparked by the second unit.

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Clear Lake's Sara Faber (#4) goes in for a shot a home game against Garner-Hayfield-Ventura on Saturday, Feb. 15.

That stretch gave the Lions a 20-point advantage that Clear Lake was able to ride to the win.

Balance on offense was key for the Lions as six different players connected on three-point shots.

Clear Lake made nine shots from beyond the arc in the game.

Faber, who recently became the all-time leading scorer in five-player basketball at Clear Lake, was limited to just five field goal attempts on the night, but the senior made all five – including a trio of three-pointers – and was also perfect from the free-throw line to finish with 17.

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Chloe Frank (#3) looks to pass at a game against Clear Lake on Saturday, Feb. 15.

Chelsey Holck added 13 points while Darby Dodd finished with eight.

Jayden Frank finished with 16 to lead the Cardinals, including a 10-for-10 performance from the free-throw line.

Chloe Frank and Morgan Ryerson had nine apiece for G-H-V.

Clear Lake (20-2) advances to Wednesday’s regional semifinal where the Lions will entertain Forest City.

The Indians (14-7) advanced with a 52-41 win over Humboldt on Saturday.

The Cardinals finished their season with an overall mark of 8-14.


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