Lady Pirates win State title
The Prairie Lady Pirates won the 8th state girls basketball title in the school’s history with a 61-51 win over Troy Saturday, Feb. 18 at the Idaho Center in Nampa.
To get to the title game they beat Glenns Ferry 42-27 on Thursday and Notus 48-30 on Friday, both at Columbia High School in Nampa.Taylor Heitman scored 2 of her 9 second quarter points that helped Prairie take a halftime lead against Troy. She added the and-1 as she got fouled.
When you’re playing a team for the fourth time and the previous 3 games have all been physical battles, you’d expect this one to be another and it was.
For the fourth straight year the state championship game featured 2 White Pine League schools but for the first time it was not a Lapwai-C.V. matchup. Troy had knocked off Lapwai the night before, forcing Natahnee Spencer into one of her worst games of the year.
As in the previous games with Troy it was a physical, foul-filled, turnover-plagued ball game. How many times do you turn the ball over 31 times and win? It helps when you force the opponent into 24 turnovers of their own, win the rebounding battle and dominate at the free throw line. 
Prairie jumped out to a 5-0 lead in the game on a lay-up by Rad and a 3-point play by Schaeffer.
Troy closed to within 1 at 7-6 but Schaeffer hit her only 3-pointer of the tournament to put Prairie back on top by 4.
Troy came back to tie it at 10 but Prairie led 12-10 at the quarter break thanks to a 12 foot jumper by Rad.
A steal by Sigler led to a putback by Schaeffer that made it 14-10 but Troy answered with 6 straight points, 4 by Taylor Johnson who carried the scoring load for the Trojans in the first half with 9 points.
During that Trojan run Mader and Schlader both picked up fouls and went to the bench for the rest of the half. Coach Lori Mader had been using a 6-player rotation pretty much since Kendall Schumacher had to leave the team. Now she had to go to the bench for Taylor Heitman who seen just late game mop up duty for the most part. Heitman provided a huge spark by scoring 9 of Prairie’s next 11 points and allowing Prairie to take a 25-20 halftime lead.
Troy coach Ben Snodgrass could be heard telling his players to “make her beat us” meaning Heitman, and she did. Troy had managed to hold Sigler scoreless in the half by having their star player, Nicole Knott, shadow her all over the floor. Rad was held in check with 6 points but Schaeffer and Heitman stepped it up with 10 and 9 points in the half.
For her second quarter efforts Heitman got to start the second half and added 2 more points on a full court drive for a lay-up. She also provided some ball-handling help against Troy’s press.
3 times in the third quarter Prairie led by 8, after a putback by Rad at 28-20, after Heitman’s driving lay-up at 30-22 and after a putback by Rad who rebounded a Megan Sigler scores a transition lay-up in the championship game. At left is Tanna Schlader.missed free throw and scored to make it 34-26 with 3:00 left.
Troy then got to Prairie with their pressure and forced several turnovers in a row to scored 7 straight points and cut the lead to 34-33 with 1:44 left in the third.
Rad hit the front end of a 1 and 1 to break the run. Schlader then added 2 free throws after taking a hard foul from Knott with 38 seconds left to push the lead back to 4 at 37-33.
Knott scored after another Prairie turnover but Mader was fouled just as the buzzer sounded and converted the front end of a 1 and 1 to make it 38-35 at the quarter break.
Troy quickly tied the score as Danica Case converted a 3-point play and after a transition lay-up by Mader, Troy took their first lead since the 4:05 mark of the second quarter on a 3-pointer by Johnson.
A steal by Schaeffer led to a pair of free throws to give Prairie back the lead with 6:43 left. Case converted 2 more free throws to put Troy back on top 42-43 with 5:57 left.
Rad then took over as a steal by her led to a lay-up to put Prairie on top for good. She followed that with a full-court drive for a lay-up. A defensive rebound and drive downcourt by Schaeffer led to a fast-break lay-up by Sigler that put Prairie up by 5 with 4:03 left.
Troy cut the lead back to 48-46 with 3:29 left thanks to two more turnovers by their press.
Prairie answered with another fastbreak lay-up where Schaeffer fed the ball to Sigler.
Case answered with a putback for Troy but Prairie then started to put the game away at the free throw line. Over the final 2:55 Prairie connected on 9 of 10 free throws as two Troy starters fouled out.
Sigler added another fastbreak lay-up to make it 61-50 with 15 seconds left.
Troy added a final free throw for the final 10-point margin.
Rad scored 19 points to lead all scorers with Schaeffer scoring 13, Heitman 11, Sigler 8, Schlader 6 and Mader 4.
Prairie held a 43-38 rebounding edge with Rad collecting 18 to wind up with 68 for the tournament, a 22.7 per game average. Schlader and Schaeffer added 7 rebounds each.
Sigler had 6 steals while Rad had 5, Schaeffer 4 and Schlader 3. Schaeffer had 4 assists while Sigler had 3 and Schlader 2.
Prairie was 19 for 46 from the field, 41%, and 22 for 29 at the line, 76%. Troy was 20 for 64 from the field, 31% and 9 for 19 at the line, 47%.
Schlader, who had struggled from the line the night before was 6 for 8 in the championship game.
With their 3-0 state record, Prairie winds up the season with a 21-4 overall record. Lapwai wound up winning the third place game as WPL teams finished in spots 1, 2 and 3 at State.
Prairie 12 13 13 23 -61
Troy   10 10 15 16 -51
Prairie-Mader 1-5, 2-4, 4; Schlader 0-1, 6-8, 6; Sigler 3-8, 2-2, 8; Schaeffer 4-9, 4-5, 13; Rad 6-13, 7-9, 19; VonBargen 0-3, 0-0, 0; Heitman 5-6, 1-1, 11; Bruner 0-0, 0-0, 0; Holthaus 0-0, 0-0, 0; Schmidt 0-0, 0-0, 0. 3-pointers-Schaeffer.
Troy-Yockey 0-7, 1-2, 1; Pearson 3-10, 0-0, 6; Case 4-11, 4-5, 12; Knott 4-17, 3-8, 11; Johnson 6-11, 0-2, 14; Halseth 0-1, 0-0, 0; Bull 3-6, 0-0, 6; Hosley 0-0, 0-0, 0; Bafus 0-1, 1-2, 1. 3-pointers-Johnson 2.

Prairie wins first two State games
Vs. Glenns Ferry
In their state opener the Prairie defense stifled the Glenns Ferry Pilots while MeShel Rad provided much of the scoring punch and control of the boards in a 42-27 win.
Prairie jumped out to an 11-2 lead in the first quarter with Rad scoring 5 of those points while fellow starters Tanna Schlader, Megan Sigler and MaKayla Schaeffer scored 2 each.MaKayla Schaeffer steals the ball from Notus. In the back are MeShel Rad and Megan Sigler.
Rad added 6 more points by the end of the quarter, hitting 5 of 7 attempts, as Prairie took a 17-5 lead into the second period.
In the second quarter the Pilots scored first but Prairie answered with an 8-0 run that was finished off with a Rad 3-point play as Prairie led 25-7. It was 27-10 at the half. Rad had 16 points and 18 rebounds by halftime, her board total equaling that of the entire Glenns Ferry team.
After hitting 7 of 10 shots in the first half, Rad cooled off in the second but Prairie was able to coast to victory as Glenns Ferry could not capitalize on any opportunities as they hit just 4 of 25 shots in the second half.
Prairie twice led by 21 points at 34-13 and 40-19.
The Pilots were able to close within 13 with 31 seconds left at 40-27 but Keely Schmidt closed out the game’s scoring with a lay-up.
Rad wound up with 18 points and 26 rebounds in the game to lead in both categories. She still equaled the Pilots in rebounding until picking up her fourth foul.
Sigler added 8 points, Schaeffer 7, Shelby VonBargen 4, Schlader and Schmidt 2 each and Callie Mader 1.
Prairie had a 50-41 rebounding edge that really wasn’t that close as Glenns Ferry outrebounded Prairie 8-16 in the fourth quarter with Rad out of the game.
Schaeffer and Mader had 3 steals each while Sigler and Rad had 3 assists each.
Prairie was 17 for 54 from the field, 31% and 7 for 16 at the line, 44%. Glenns Ferry was 6 for 47 from the field, 13% and 14 for 25 at the line, 56%.
Prairie            17 10 7   8 -42
Glenns Ferry    5   5 5 12 -27
Prairie-Mader 0-6, 1-3, 1; Schlader 1-2, 0-2, 2; Sigler 3-12, 1-3, 8; Schaeffer 2-7, 3-5, 7; Rad 8-16, 2-3, 18; VonBargen 2-6, 0-0, 4; Heitman 0-1, 0-0, 0; Workman 0-0, 0-0, 0; Holthaus 0-0, 0-1, 0; Schmidt 1-3, 0-0, 2; Bruner 0-1, 0-0, 0. 3-pointers-Sigler.
G.F.-McHone 2-12, 2-4, 6; Bryant 0-4, 0-1, 0; Baumann 1-6, 3-8, 5; Arellano 1-12, 7-8, 10; Gorrell 0-5, 0-0, 0; Rodriguez 1-4, 0-0, 2; C. Garza 0-3, 1-2, 1; M. Garza 1-1, 1-2, 3; Riggs 0-0, 0-0, 0; Turner 0-0, 0-0, 0; Juarez 0-0, 0-0, 0. 3-pointers-Arellano.
Vs. Notus
The Notus game turned out to be tougher than expected due in large part to Prairie’s inability to make either lay-ups or free throws although they still won by 18, 48-30.
Rad was still able to dominate on the board with 24 rebounds but really struggled to put the ball through the hoop as she hit just 2 of 20 attempts. A lot of that can be attributed to the defense of Notus senior Taylor Gumb who made Rad work to get her shot off and forced a lot of off-balance attempts.MeShel Rad with a rare open shot at State. This one came against Notus.
At the free throw line Prairie hit just 2 of 11 first half attempts, 1 for 9 in the second quarter, which led to them trailing 18-21 at the halftime break after a 9-9 tie at the end of the first quarter.
Notus scored first to start the second half and take an 18-23 lead but the Notus Pirates then succumbed to Prairie’s full court press.
Prairie forced Notus into 14 third quarter turnovers and held them scoreless for over 5 minutes. Notus was rarely even able to get the ball past the top of the key on Prairie’s end. When Prairie wasn’t outright stealing the ball the pressure was forcing bad passes.
It was a Notus turnover that led to the go-ahead basket that came on a perimeter shot by Mader with 4:39 left in the quarter. Rad had the ball down low but was forced to pass it back out to Mader who drained a 15 foot shot. Rad then connected on 4 straight free throws and had a steal that led to a basket by Schlader that completed a 12-0 Prairie run and put them up 30-23 with 1:57 left in the third.
Prairie led 32-26 heading into the fourth quarter.
Notus twice cut the lead to 4 in the fourth quarter, the last at 34-30 with 5:27 left. That would be the last time Notus would score though as Prairie closed the game with a 14-0 run to put them into the state championship game for the first time since 2002.
Schlader scored 12 points to lead Prairie in scoring despite a 2 for 12 struggle at the free throw line. Rad scored 11 and Sigler 9, with Schaeffer and VonBargen scoring 6 each and Mader 4.
Prairie dominated the boards 48-27 as Schlader had 14 in addition to Rad’s 24. 
Schlader also came up big on defense in the only game of the 3 at State that she didn’t wind up in foul trouble. She had 6 steals while Mader, Schaeffer and Rad had 4 each as Prairie forced Notus into 35 turnovers while committing just 17.
Schaeffer had 3 assists while Mader added 2.
Prairie was 18 for 64 from the field, 28%, and 12 for 28 at the line, 43%. Notus was 12 for 33 from the field, 36% and 3 for 6 at the line, 50%. If Prairie had made just half of their missed lay-up attempts they would’ve won by 40 instead of 18.
Prairie 9   9 14 16 -48
Notus 9 12   5   4 -30
Prairie-Mader 2-5, 0-0, 4; Schlader 5-10, 2-12, 12; Sigler 4-16, 1-2, 9; Schaeffer 2-8, 2-5, 6; Rad 2-20, 7-9, 11; VonBargen 3-4, 0-2, 6. 3-pointers-none.
Notus-Parra 1-3, 2-4, 5; Christensen 2-6, 0-0, 5; Gumb 3-7, 0-0, 6; Basaldua 0-4, 0-0, 0; Ledford 3-5, 1-2, 8; Paz 2-4, 0-0, 5; Guillen 1-4, 0-0, 2. 3-pointers-Parra, Christensen, Paz.
Callie Mader puts up a shot against Troy. At left is Tanna Schlader.
Megan Sigler lines up a shot against Notus. In the foreground is Tanna Schlader.
Shelby VonBargen splits a pair of Deary defenders as she goes to the hoop.
The Lady Pirates display the state championship banner and trophy after beating Troy 61-51 for the school’s 8th girls basketball title. Kneeling are MeShel Rad, Shelby VonBargen and Tanna Schlader. Standing from left are Taylor Heitman, Callie Mader, MaKayla Schaeffer, Megan Sigler, Beka Bruner, Leah Holthaus, Keely Schmidt and Tyler Workman. Prairie also won the Sportsmanship Award for the 4th time.

JV games start at 6 p.m., varsity to follow unless indicated. 
*indicates league game
15-Nezperce, here, won 44-33
17-C.V, here, won 53-38
21-Kendrick, there--won 46-30
22-Troy, there, lost 45-54
28-Timberline, here, won 55-43
29-Potlatch, here*, won 45-12
  2-Grangeville, here, Idaho County Shootout, won 52-37
  6-C.V., there*, won 56-52
  8-Genesee, there*, won 59-30
10-Kamiah, there, lost 41-52
12-Troy, here*, won 53-47
16-Grangeville, there, won 39-27
  3-Highland, here, won 57-19
  6-Lapwai, there*, lost 49-53
10-Deary, there*, won 38-17
13-Nezperce, there, won 55-38
20-Kamiah, here, lost 38-58
24-Summit, here, won 35-33
25-Kendrick, here*, won 58-39
Jan. 30, Feb 1, 3, 6 , 8 & 10-District at LCSC-defeated Deary 52-24 in District opener. Beat Troy 49-36. Beat Lapwai 51-41-District Champs!!!
Feb. 16-18-State at Nampa's Columbia High School, Beat Glenns Ferry 42-27; Beat Notus 48-30; Beat Troy 61-51--STATE CHAMPS!!!
Cottonwood, Idaho 83522


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