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Raiders Marshfield tourney champs

The Raider girls' basketball team celebrates its 76-73 come from behind victory over Wausau West in the championship game of the Marshfield Tiger Girls Basketball Invitational in Marshfield. (Submitted photo)

Ty Huber hit a pair of free throws to tie the game with under a minute remaining, then nailed a 3-pointer from the corner with four seconds left to give the Raider girls' basketball team a 76-73 victory over Wausau West in the championship game of the Marshfield Tiger Girls Basketball Invitational in Marshfield last Thursday night.

Hudson improved to 8-2 with the victory while Wausau West lost for just the second time this season. The Raiders defeated host Marshfield, 69-51, in Wednesday's opening round.

"Playing back-to-back games against a very good 8-1 Wausau West team was a great test for us, and it had a playoff type atmosphere today," Hudson coach Joe Behnke said after his team's seventh straight win. "We match up very well with Wausau West, and today's game was just a great basketball game with both teams playing through all types of adversity and continually responding."

Hudson lost point guard Lucy Fashingbauer to a sprained ankle midway through the first half and battled major foul trouble early but still managed to lead 37-33 at the break.

"The pace was up and down with both teams constantly switching up defenses," Behnke said. "Wausau West took their first lead of the game with only a few minutes remaining, and you could tell the team with the ball last had the best chance to win as the lead kept exchanging hands throughout the last two minutes."

Huber's two free throws tied the score, 73-73, and the Raiders came up with a huge defensive stop to regain possession with 26 seconds left.

"We ran a set with about 12 seconds to play, and we didn't get our initial look but the ball found its way to Ty in the left corner," Behnke noted.

Huber drained the 3-pointer to give Hudson a 76-73 lead with four seconds left, and a long 3-pointer by Wausau West at the buzzer was no good.

"Great win for the girls today and just a fun game to be a part of," Behnke said. "Wins like that really can give you that confidence boost and propel you coming out of the break."

Five different Raiders scored in double figures, led by Shayla Wallin with 21. Huber finished with 16 points, including three 3-pointers, while contributing three assists and three steals.

"Ty Huber had a coming out party today as she played her most minutes of the season after Lucy went down," Behnke said.

Lexi Jonas finished with 12 points and four assists and Kylee Christiansen had 11 points and nine rebounds while Ashley Juza scored 11. In addition to her game-high 21 points, Wallin also pulled down seven rebounds and came up with a team-high seven steals.

One night earlier, Jonas finished with 17 points and eight assists, and Wallin and Juza each posted double-doubles in a 69-51 victory over tourney host Marshfield.

"Marshfield has nipped us the past few years in some close contests, and we came out with great energy and really dictated the game to them tonight," Behnke said.

Hudson scored the first six points of the game on its way to opening up a 14-4 lead and Marshfield never got any closer than eight points the rest of the way.

Wallin had 16 points and 11 rebounds in addition to making four steals while Juza finished with 10 points, 10 board and five assists. Christiansen contributed 14 points and three blocked shots while Kayla Gertschen finished with seven points.

The Raiders outrebounded Marshfield, 35-24, while forcing 17 Tiger turnovers.

"We just played solid on both ends tonight and feel like we are continually making strides to make ourselves as complete a team as possible," Behnke said.

Hudson, 3-0 in the Big Rivers Conference, will visit Menomonie (8-2, 1-1) Friday, Jan. 6, and host Rice Lake (3-4, 1-1) at 5:45 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 10.

Bob Burrows
Bob Burrows has been sports editor at the River Falls Journal since 1996 and at the Hudson Star-Observer since 2009. Prior to joining the Journal, Burrows served as sports editor with Ledger Publications in Balsam Lake, Wis. A native of Bayonne, N.J. and a U.S. Navy veteran, Burrows attended Marquette University before completing his studies at UW-River Falls in 1992.
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