Krueger’s big game carries Bay Port to regional title
By Rich Palzewic
SUAMICO – Bay Port sophomore Emma Krueger poured in 26 points and grabbed 10 rebounds in the Pirates’ 60-36 victory over Eau Claire Memorial Feb. 29.
The WIAA Division 1 regional final victory propelled No. 1-seeded Bay Port (22-2) to the sectional semifinals, where it will take on No. 5 Stevens Point (17-7) Thursday, March 5, at D.C. Everest High School.
Krueger netted 11 first-half points and followed with 15 after intermission.
“In the beginning, my shots weren’t falling, so I decided to take it to the rim,” said Krueger, who scored 22 points in the regional opener Feb. 28 against D.C. Everest.
Bay Port head coach Kati was also impressed with Krueger.
“We all knew she was capable of playing like she has the last two games,” she said. “Emma is a competitor. She’s going to do what it takes to win. Whether it’s setting 100 screens, knocking down shots, getting excited for her teammates or getting rebounds, she’ll get it done. It’s nice to see her offseason hard work is paying off.”
McKenzie Johnson scored the Pirates’ first 10 points of the game on a pair of three-pointers, two free throws and a two-point field goal.
Bay Port jumped out to a 16-2 lead, only to see the Old Abes storm back to within 19-16 late in the first half.
The Memorial comeback coincided with its switch to a zone defense.
“It took us a little longer to settle in, but we slowed things down to get good shots,” Coleman said.
Krueger stopped the Old Abes’ momentum with a key three-point play, which was part of a 9-1 run to end the first 18 minutes of play.
“We felt the tables turning, and we knew we had to do something great,” said Krueger. “I took it upon my shoulders and got a great pass from my teammate. I saw an opportunity and took it.”
Bay Port’s Mady Draak and Raegan McIntyre were saddled with three first-half fouls and were forced to sit on the bench for extended periods of time.
After halftime, the Pirates started on a 16-4 spurt to put the game away.
Johnson ended with 12 points, and Alaina Abel had five assists.
“The plan is to win and advance,” Coleman added. “We’ve been here before. We had a great week of practice last week, and we have to continue with that momentum.”