COLUMBUS -- Tuesday’s semifinal of the C1-7 subdistrict tournament between Lakeview and North Bend came down to one thing -- rebounding.
The Vikings lost that battle 32-21 and the Vikings lost the game 52-40.
“Even despite their big size advantage, we were not physical enough rebounding and they got too many shots,” Lakeview head coach Monte Jones said. “I thought defensively, we forced the shots we wanted them to shoot and then they’d get second and third attempts and that was the difference.”
The Tigers (18-4) pulled down 11 offensive rebounds in the game, including four by 6-foot sophomore Lauren Emanuel, who finished with 16 rebounds in the game.
“We were in good position a lot of times, we just didn’t hold our box and that really hurt,” Jones continued.
It didn’t matter what the Vikings tried defensively, whether it was their standard 1-3-1 defense or one they designed specifically to try and negate North Bend’s size advantage, the Tigers made them pay.
North Bend scored the first six points of the game and jumped out to a 10-2 lead in the first quarter. Gracie Borer had the next six points for Lakeview, which cut the deficit to 12-8 late in the period. North Bend, though, still led 16-10 after the first quarter.
The second period is where the Tigers really pulled away. North Bend’s bigs, combined for 23 of the team’s 31 points in the first half. Brooke Fredrickson led the charge with 11 of her team-high 13 points in the first two quarters. Kristin Lux, a West Virginia volleyball commit, had eight of her 11 in the first half.
“We dug the hole. That made it tough,” Jones said.
Lakeview never got closer than 14 points until Sydnie Voichoskie’s 3-pointer in the final seconds of the game cut the final margin to 12.
It all went right for the Tigers on Tuesday. With the score 41-27, Lakeview had a chance to inch closer in the final seconds of the third quarter. Instead North Bend got the ball back and Lux banked in a 3-pointer from several feet behind the arc to make it 44-27 going to the fourth quarter.
Borer scored a game-high 16 points before fouling out in the fourth quarter.
Lakeview finishes with an 11-13 record in Jones’ first season as head coach.
“It was so awesome,” Jones said of his inaugural campaign with the Vikings. “The kids are so great to work with. They listen to me and did what I told them and got steadily better. We won a bunch of close games, which shows character and a teachable spirit.”
The loss closes the high school careers of six seniors for the Vikings -- Ali Janssen, Brooklyn Wilke, Voichoskie, Morgan Bignell, Marina Jimenez and Cailin Briggs.
“I’m really proud of my seniors, who were such great leaders,” Jones said. “If I can get seniors who will lead like that every year, we’re going to win a lot of games.”
The coach has to anxiously wait another nine months now before he gets to do it all over again.
“It’s been a blast,” he said. “I can’t wait for next season start.”