ADVERTISEMENT

ADVERTISEMENT

Girls basketball unbeatens Esko, Barnum square off

Two years ago when Barnum visited Esko in a girls basketball game, the teams had a combined one defeat. That's one more than when the Northland's top teams collide tonight at the Esko high school gym."(Tonight's) game means something; it counts,"...

Two years ago when Barnum visited Esko in a girls basketball game, the teams had a combined one defeat.

That's one more than when the Northland's top teams collide tonight at the Esko high school gym."(Tonight's) game means something; it counts," Barnum coach Randy Myhre said. "We're really looking forward to (tonight)."

The top-ranked Bombers are 17-0 and winners of 38 straight games -- including the school's first Class A state title in 2010 -- and are 42-0 in the Polar League since last losing to the Eskomos in the 2006-07 season. The Bombers also have won 39 consecutive road games.

Fifth-ranked Esko is 15-0 and 7-0 in a conference that has been determined the past seven years by the outcome of this matchup.

"It's a big piece of the puzzle to winning the Polar League," Eskomos coach Scott Antonutti said.

ADVERTISEMENT

Barnum is led by senior guard Jessica Newman, a Minnesota Duluth signee, who averages 20 points a game, and junior guard Katie Myhre, who has hit 41 3-point attempts. Both were important cogs on the Bombers' state title team.

Esko counters with an athletic lineup of Keely Deadrick (19.1 points per game), Lydia Pelletier, Alyson Glumac, Marisa Shady and 6-foot-8 Division I recruit Savanna Trapp (15.5 ppg, 7.5 rebounds per game).

"Savanna alone gives us a pretty good advantage (inside), but last year we turned the ball over a bunch," Antonutti said of a 61-41 loss. "If we can control the ball more and take care of it, hopefully we can have a closer game and challenge them."

Antonutti said Trapp's presence allows his perimeter players to be more aggressive with their defense since opponents still need to face a shot-blocker inside.

"Savanna's a big key for us; she's definitely a game-changer with her height," he said of the sophomore who is receiving recruiting letters from major colleges nationwide. "She's noticeably improved, and more athletic, stronger and more agile."

Barnum doesn't have that kind of height, but the Bombers have beaten plenty of talented teams during a decade-long run that includes six trips to the state tournament. Myhre, third in state history with 593 career victories, says he patterned his own program after Esko.

"We really appreciate what Esko does in girls basketball because they take it seriously," said Myhre, who won his 500th game three years ago against Esko. "They help us get to where we are. They set a standard that we want to exceed."

Related Topics: ESKO
What To Read Next
Peterson’s unassisted goal lifts Springfield to the NAHL home win.
Ice cross racers are competing in three divisions during multiple days of competition at Mont du Lac Resort in Superior as part of the U.S. Ice Cross Association's annual ATSX 250 event.
Thoreson’s third-period goal is the difference as Posch is tough in net for Minnesota.
Three-day Ski de She camp and clinic in Cable will include Olympic champion Kikkan Randall.