Minnehaha guard Tanna Gallo (1) battled Albany center Breanna Mellesmoen (22) and guard Amanda Kollodge (3) for the ball in the first half. Photo: ANTHONY SOUFFLE • email@example.com
Minnehaha Academy and Albany traded the lead four times in the final three minutes, before a late layup put the Redhawks up for good in the Class 2A semifinals Friday at Williams Arena.
Junior guard Mia Curtis hit that layup with 1:23 left, assisted by senior guard Taytum Rhoades, as Minnehaha Academy (24-6) took a 65-64 lead before eventually winning 70-67.
“There was never any panic in our girls, and I think that’s a testament to the leaders we have on this team,” coach Matt Pryor said.
Minnehaha Academy trailed most of the second half and was down 55-48 with 8:21 to go. Rhoades led the comeback and capped it by hitting three free throws in the final 50 seconds. Curtis and senior guard Avery New also hit late free throws to help seal the victory.
Third-seeded Minnehaha Academy came from behind to defeat unseeded Albany 70-67 in the Class 2A semifinals Friday at Williams Arena.
The Redhawks (24-6) had trailed for most of the second half before a late run. Senior Taytum Rhoades led the team with 27 points and junior guard Mia Curtis had 17.
Sophomore guard Paige Meyer led the Huskies (19-11) with 29 points, including 18 in the second half. Meyer had two three-point opportunities in the game's final 10 seconds but did not connect on either.
Albany had led 36-32 at halftime, behind 11 from Meyer and 10 points from senior guard Amanda Kollodge. The Huskies shot 54 percent in the half and outrebounded the Redhawks 20-13, despite being undersized.
The Huskies stretched their lead to seven midway through the second half before Minnehaha Academy cut the lead to one at 57-56 and took a 60-59 lead with 2:58 to go.
The teams traded the lead four times in the next minute before Minnehaha Academy took control.
Minnehaha Academy was making its sixth consecutive state appearance and is looking for its first title since 2010. Albany was making its first state appearance since 2008.
The Huskies reached the state semifinals by defeating Class 2A, Section 6 No. 1 seed Sauk Centre, the defending state champions, 47-41 in the section semifinals. They defeated second-seeded Holy Family Catholic 60-49 in the state quarterfinals.
Check back later for more on the game.