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WJBD - Local Sports - Salem Succumbs to Mater Dei

Shelby Holst (14) sets a screen for a teammate as Emily Baer prepares to inbound the ball Thursday night. Salem wore pink uniforms for their 3rd Annual Cancer Awareness Pink Out.

Salem Succumbs to Mater Dei

The Salem Lady Wildcats will enter the Centralia Regional Tournament with a losing record for the first time in many years after suffering a 53-35 setback to Mater Dei Thursday night in Salem.

Salem trailed by ten points after the first quarter but slowly worked the deficit down to six points, but the Lady Knights put three players in double figures and held Salem to just two points in the third quarter to drop the Lady Cats to 14-15 for the regular season.

One of Salem's biggest struggles was free throw shooting, where the Lady Cats were just 2-for-18, and Head Coach Janet Holst says that this team has practiced foul shots more than past teams, but change may be coming.

"This group of kids has shot more free throws in practice than we ever did a year ago, but I'm about to adopt the philosophy that we're not going to do that anymore and we're just going to let the chips fall where they lay."

Salem put seven players in the scoring column, led by junior Kyla Cook's ten points. Senior Morgan Hawkins tallied nine in her final game at BE Gumm Gymnasium. Once again Salem found themselves in a spot where their shots were not falling, but Holst said her squad competed hard and was pleased with their effort.

"I can't complain about their effort tonight, and I did Monday. I asked them to come in and play hard. I asked them to get on the floor. I asked them to be aggressive. And they did that. The ball doesn't go into the basket...that's fixable."

Holst acknowledges that many young players are seeing a significant amount of playing time this year.

"We're playing a lot of young kids. I think they rush things because of their youth. But I think they have a lot of potential and I'm not going to give on that. I think it's going to come."

These young players now have a full season under their belts and the postseason awaits next. Salem will have their fourth meeting with the Centralia Orphan Annies Monday night in Centralia in the first round of regional play. Toby Gullion and Greg Mehochko will have all of the action for you at 7:30 on AM 1350 WJBD.

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