The Wauwatosa West girls basketball team will have some time to think about the postseason, following a nonconference game Monday (6-14) at Burlington.
The Trojans closed out the year by losing to Pewaukee (18-3, 13-3), 61-38, Friday at home.
"Friday's game had some extra emotion going on besides the game (Senior Night), and I was very happy with how we played for certain stretches of the game," Tosa West coach Ashley Imperiale said. "We have yet to string together a full 32 minutes of solid basketball, but I feel like we are in such a great place right now mentally, physically and emotionally as a team."
Imperiale then talked about her team's preparation for the game against the Pirates.
"We had a full week to prepare for Pewaukee, which can be hard when you come off a bad loss (68-15 at New Berlin Eisenhower on Feb. 8), but it worked out perfectly because we were able to add a little homework and classroom work to our week of practice. We focused on believing this week.
"The girls had to come up with as many things as they could that they can control in every game - they came up with 106 - and I made them write them on Post-It notes and hang them in the gym."
Imperiale was not happy with the loss to Eisenhower.
"We lost to Ike, a very good team, but they are not 40-plus points better than us. We didn't believe in ourselves and what we are good at and can control. We really focused on these 106 things and believing, and for stretches against Pewaukee we showed this belief."
The final results were not there, but Imperiale was looking at the big picture.
"I always talk about progress, not perfection, and Friday was another night where we made progress. Think back to the first time we played Pewaukee and we turned the ball over 20 some times in the first quarter and could not handle their pressure. This time around, we made some mistakes here and there, but their full court pressure didn't beat us this time. That's progress. We took our mistakes from last time, learned from them and grew."
She was pleased with what she saw at times on offense.
"We had a few new looks on the offensive end to really play to our offensive strength, which is passing. We are unselfish and great passers, and for the first game action with these looks we, overall, did a pretty good job with them. Progress."
The Pirates led 27-14 at intermission. Tosa West played a good third quarter (15-15), but then struggled in the fourth quarter (19-9).
Pewaukee's one-two combo of Abby Gerrits (18 points) and Lindsay Wisniewski (16) led the scoring.
Four players scored for the Trojans: Abbey Jones (13), Latasha Harmon (11) and Elise Ditscheit (7) and Ashley Lindstrom (7).
Earned sixth seed
The sixth-seeded Trojans will host 11th-seeded Milwaukee Messmer at 7 p.m. Tuesday.
"Our kids are definitely motivated and are on a mission," Imperiale said. "If we can truly believe in all 106 things we said we can control in every game and stay disciplined in our actions, I like where we are moving as we roll into the postseason."
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