Jamnick, unbeaten Tower-Soudan too much for Ely girls

by Tom Coombe

Playing without three starters and facing unbeaten Tower-Soudan, Ely’s high school girls basketball team had a tall order Thursday night.<BR><BR>And the tallest of the Golden Eagles erased any hopes of a Timberwolves upset.<BR><BR>Katie Jamnick, Tower-Soudan’s 6-1 center, dominated inside as the Golden Eagles pulled away in the second half for a 58-34 Arrowhead Conference victory.<BR><BR>Jamnick scored 15 points, snared 14 rebounds and dominated defensively, swatting eight shots and forcing Ely to stay outside.<BR><BR>Many of Jamnick’s rebounds and blocked shots set up fast-break baskets for the Golden Eagles, who won for the tenth time in as many games.<BR><BR>Tower-Soudan, ranked eighth in Class A, had too much firepower for the undermanned Wolves, who continued to play without injured starters Jackie Lekatz, Kelsey Ivancich and Christa Streit.<BR><BR>The Wolves, who pulled out a dramatic win over Chisholm two nights before, fell to 5-4 for the season.<BR><BR>Tower-Soudan got out of the gates quickly, with Jamnick scoring inside and guards Whitney Johnson and Alex Tomsich scoring in transition.<BR><BR>Tomsich’s three-pointer gave T-S a 17-4 lead late in the first quarter.<BR><BR>It was 17-6 going into the second, but the Wolves cut the gap to two at 21-19 with their best flurry of the night.<BR><BR>Ninth-grader Tomi McDonald, who led all scorers with 23 points, knocked down two long-distance bombs in the quarter and Ely erased the large early deficit.<BR><BR>But the Golden Eagles quickly scrapped a zone defense in favor of a man-to-man setup. That stymied the Wolves and T-S built a 28-19 lead by halftime. <BR><BR>It was all Tower-Soudan in the third. Tomsich had nine of her 15 points in the quarter, Katie Zavodnik hit a pair of mid-range jumpers and the Golden Eagles outscored Ely 21-8 in the quarter.<BR><BR>That finished the Wolves, who never threatened again.<BR><BR>In addition to Jamnick and Tomsich, Johnson also hit double digits with 12 points. Zavodnik was next with six.<BR><BR>McDonald dominated the Ely scoring charts, with Candice Smrekar adding six points.<BR><BR>The Wolves met Maranatha Academy over the weekend and go to Babbitt Thursday for a meeting with the Knights.<BR><BR>Wolves 40, Chisholm 39<BR><BR>Sophomore guard Barb Klun was the hero of Tuesday’s contest.<BR><BR>Fouled while attempting a three-pointer with two seconds left, Klun calmly sank all three free throws - even after the visiting Bluestreaks called timeout to ice her - giving Ely a one-point win and capping a massive fourth-quarter rally.<BR><BR>Ely trailed 36-24 going into the final quarter but stormed back for the win.<BR><BR>“We never gave up,” said Ely Head Coach Judy Klun.<BR><BR>A McDonald three-pointer got the Wolves rolling, and the pressure defense got to the Bluestreaks.<BR><BR>Trailing 39-35 in the final minute, Ely got a key bucket from Smrekar to cut the gap to two.<BR><BR>The Wolves got the ball back, setting up Klun’s heroics in the final seconds.<BR><BR>Angie Mackie had four of her eight points in the last quarter and the senior center finished with a team-high 10 rebounds.<BR><BR>Klun scored 15 points and McDonald was next with 13. Smrekar (two) and Guck (two) rounded out the scoring for Ely.<BR><BR>Jen Pernat had 10 points for Chisholm, which was held without a field goal in the final quarter.