Russell goes on, Norton goes home
It wasn’t much of a matchup in the Amos Morris Gymnasium this evening. The Russell Lady Broncos never trailed Norton, building a 15-2 lead through the first six minutes and coasting to a 44-29 victory.
Russel (11-10 gets a third shot at Beloit (18-3) in the semifinals Thursday at 7:30 p.m. on the Trojans’ home floor. Beloit won the two regular season meetings, 53-47 at Russell Jan. 9 and 73-54 at Beloit Feb. 13. This will be the first postseason game between the North Central Activities Association foes since 2003.
The Bluejays (10-12) got as close as six late in the third quarter, but the Broncos quickly responded and extended their lead back to double figures.
The Broncos will have trouble getting past Beloit. Not only did the Trojans sweep the regular season series, but Russell is 1-9 this season vs. teams with winning records. The lone win was over Class 1A LaCrosse in the semifinals of the Hoisington Winter Jam Jan. 23. The Broncos were also 0-2 vs. Ellinwood, Minneapolis and Southeast of Saline, and lost to Central Plains in the championship of the Amos Morris/George Stephens Classic.
It looks like Phillipsburg will be half the matchup in the other semifinal at Beloit. The Panthers lead Hoisington 36-24 after three. The opponent will likely be Minneapolis, which is going for the three-game sweep of Ellsworth.