Kodiaks too deep for Wolves hoopsters
Melissa Buhler and Erin Slemp were recognized as two of the top women’s basketball players in the ACAC before the GPRC Wolves left for their playoff series with the Lethbridge Kodiaks.
Buhler was named a first-team all-star and Slemp was a second-team selection.
But the Kodiaks had three first-team selections of their own and were able to beat the Wolves and end their season.
One Lethbridge all-star in particular rose to the occasion in game one against GPRC. Kayla Lambert scored 24 points in the first half alone against the Wolves in an 85-66 Lethbridge win.
“It’s tough to stop someone like her. She plays like a guy,” said Wolves coach Kim Gravengard. “She shoots NBA three-pointers, loves pressure situations. When you’ve got your hand an inch from her face and she’s lacing it into the net, it’s tough to stop.”
The Wolves were able to contain Lambert in game two, holding her to just 11 points. But Bonnie Smith, another Lethbridge all-star, scored 24 to help the Kodiaks beat the Wolves 76-63 and sweep the series.
“I don’t think they (Wolves) played as well the first night, but the second night they played tough and didn’t quit, which I really like about their team,” said Kodiaks coach Brad Karren. “They worked hard the whole game and they weren’t going to give up no matter what.”
Saturday’s game marked the final game for three players with the Wolves, including Slemp and Buhler, who retires as the team’s all-time leading scorer.
“She (Buhler) really played her heart and soul out there for her final game,” Gravengard said. “Erin Slemp and Leah McNeil, my three veterans who are not returning, they gave it their all. The girls ended on a positive note and when it’s coming to the end of your career for college basketball it’s nice to end on a note where you feel like you didn’t leave anything to spare.”