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Free throws carry Chargers to win

Megan Kokett drives to the bucket during a game against Barnesville on December 3, 2013. Kokett had a team-leading 13 points against Battle Lake. (Blaze Fugina/Echo Press)

The Brandon-Evansville girls remained the only team unbeaten in the Little Eight Conference after beating Battle Lake 55-46 last Thursday night.

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The Battlers like to use their strength led by senior post Carly VanWatermulen. She had 16 and Maddy Merickel added 14 but no other Battle Lake player had more than six as just six players scored total.

“We played pretty good pressure defense and forced them into our tempo,” Chargers head coach Dick Simpson said.

“They’re big. They outrebounded us pretty bad, but we were able to play at our tempo and then the foul differential was a pretty big deal, so I was pretty happy with how we played.”

It was the Chargers’ first game since December 19 after having a couple games postponed because of weather. Brandon-Evansville didn’t show much rust as the Chargers took a 10-point lead at the break and didn’t look back.

Megan Kokett led the Chargers with 13 points. Carrigan Okerlund added 11 points and four steals and Melissa Haseman poured in nine points. Emma Friedrich led the team with seven rebounds, while also adding five points.

“It was a nice win after three weeks off,” Simpson said. “The kids played pretty well for that amount of time off.”

The biggest difference in the game came at the free throw line. The Battlers made it there just four times, while the Chargers went 17-of-27. Brandon-Evansville shot 16-of-43 from the field, including six threes, and Battle Lake shot 17-of-48. The Battlers also outrebounded the Chargers 35-22.

Brandon-Evansville was set to take its 5-2 overall record and 3-0 mark in the LEC into three games this week. The Chargers were home against Wheaton on Monday and at Rothsay on Tuesday. They will head to Parkers Prairie this Friday to take on the Panthers. Parkers Prairie was 4-4 and 2-1 in league play after a win over Hillcrest Lutheran Academy last Thursday.

The Chargers also rescheduled the games they lost to weather with Clinton-Graceville-Beardsley coming to Evansville on February 3. That game was originally scheduled to be on the road. The Chargers will also travel to Melrose on February 24.



BATTLE LAKE 19 27 – 46

TOTALS – B-E – FG – 16-43; FT – 17-27; Rebounds – 22; Assists – 9; Steals – 13; Turnovers – 15; Battle Lake – FG – 17-48; FT – 3-4; Rebounds – 35; Turnovers – 19

B-E – Kokett – 13 points; Kinsley Randt – 2 points, 4 rebounds; Haseman – 9 points; Okerlund – 11 points, 4 steals; Elizabeth Vinson – 6 points, 3 steals, 4 assists; Mariah Hansen – 5 points; Friedrich – 5 points, 7 rebounds; Kristine Betterman – 4 points

BATTLE LAKE SCORING – Maddie Stueve – 2; Merickel – 14; VanWatermulen – 16; Olivia Hull – 4; Katie Rilla – 6; Emily Marso – 4

Eric Morken

Eric Morken is the sports and outdoor editor at the Echo Press and Osakis Review newspapers in Douglas County, MN. Follow him on Twitter at echo_sports.

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