The 29th Annual Lewiston Auto Warrior Club Tournament has come and gone, and what a tournament it was. There were instant classic nail-biting games, fantastic individual performances and the Lewiston-Altura girls basketball team ending a 30-game losing streak.
A wealth of memories, but when it comes to the All-Tournament team, these players stood out from both the boys and girls sides.
Player of the Tournament — Gach Gach (Austin): Gach’s Packers club didn’t come away with a win, but it wasn’t due to a lack of performance on the floor. Gach scored 19 points against Simley and 23 on Caledonia in two games, keeping Austin in both till the final buzzer sounded
Cullin Neeck (Lewiston-Altura): Neeck exploded for a tournament-high 28 points against Hope Lutheran to go along with six rebounds, and followed that up with 23 points against Mabel-Canton
Owen King (Caledonia): King dropped 24 points on Winona in the Warriors’ tourney opener, then had 19 against Austin
C.J. Woda (Heritage Christian Academy): Woda scored 14 against Fillmore Central, but exploded for 25 versus Cotter, earning him a spot in the starting five
Jack Stensgard (Simley): One half of the “Splash Brothers” had 16 points against Austin and then 19 against Austin in impressive back-to-back performances
Honorable mention: Andrew Fratzke (Hope Lutheran), Alex Murphy (Cochrane-Fountain City), P.J. Appicelli (Winona), Donald Ells III (Winona), Keyser Wenthold (Mabel-Canton), Tanner Scott (Heritage Christian Academy), Kyle Sorenson (Caledonia)
Player of the Tournament — Carolyn Shanahan (St. Charles): Shanahan scored a girls two-game best 39 points, including 25 against Alden-Conger to lead the Saints to a pair of victories
Bella Lien (Heritage Christian Academy): Lien went for 15 points against Lanesboro and 20 on Fillmore Central
Gabby Bowlin (Cotter): Bowlin led the Ramblers to a win with 11 points against Lanesboro, then nearly helped pull the upset win over WSHS with 23 on the Winhawks
Emelia Schindeldecker (Lewistion-Altura): Schindeldecker notched 13 points for the Cardinals in their victory over Hope Lutheran on Day 1, which snapped an overall 30-game losing streak. Schindeldecker then dropped 20 on Mabel-Canton to make it two in a row for L-A
Kerrigan Lyga (Cochrane-Fountain City): Lyga paced the Pirates with 18 points against Mabel-Canton, then had 12 against Hope Lutheran in a pair of C-FC wins
Honorable mention: Annika Simonson (Heritage Christian Academy), Emily Beeman (Lewiston-Altura), Rylee Gabel (Cochrane-Fountain City), Cori Kennedy (Kasson-Mantorville), Kristin Scott (Kasson-Mantorville)
The “Splash Brothers,” also known as the Stengards scored 39 points to lead Simley past Winona Senior High School in a tight-knit 71-67 victory in the final game of the 29th Annual Lewiston Auto Warrior Club Tournament at McCown Gymnasium on Tuesday.
Sam Stensgard scored 20, fifteen of which came in the first half, and Jack Stensgard finished with 19.
With WSHS (2-9) up 14-7 early, Simley unleashed a 15-0 run that put them in the driver’s seat, though the Winhawks pushed them all night.
Donald Ells III nailed a 3-pointer to make it 70-65 in favor of Simley (7-4) with 27 seconds remaining, but that led to Derrick Gray free throw. P.J. Appicelli connected on a jumper with 6.3 seconds to go, but the Winhawks couldn’t get the ball back, and Simley came away with a hard-fought victory.
Appicelli finished with a game-high 23 points, while Ells III went for 15 points and Trey Bechley had 12 for Winona.
It was a hard-fought, defensive affair, but despite a clutch 3-pointer, free throw and thirteen-second half points from Austin’s Gach Gach, his heave at the end of regulation careened off the top of the backboard to give Simley a 52-49 victory over Austin in the 29th Annual Lewiston Auto Warrior Club Tournament at McCown Gymnasium on Monday.
The victory snapped a three-game losing streak for Simley (6-4), but not without dramatics at the conclusion of the game.
Down 49-44 with a minute to play, Austin’s Dylan Gasner drew a foul on a 3-pointer that he drilled, and the subsequent free throw made it a one-point game in favor of the Spartans.
Jack Stensgard then made one of two free throws, Gach missed a bonus opportunity at the other end, and Ben Scheffley’s free throw gave Simley a 52-49 advantage that stood up when Gach’s long distance toss proved long.
Stensgard was one of three players to score in double figures for Simley with 16 points, while Sam Stensgard had 11 and Matthew Amspoker finished with 10.
Gach led all scorers with 19, including 13 in the second half, with only Nik Gasner and Levi Vierkandt scoring as many as five points for Austin (5-5).