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Evans, Smith lead Willmar rout of Alex

Willmar's Kelsey Evans draws double coverage from Alexandria's Sam Trumm, left, and Ally Teclaw before dishing off to Jena Thompson for an easy basket in the second half at Willmar on Tuesday. Tribune photo by Rand Middleton

WILLMAR -- Kelsey Evans and Hannah Smith each struck for 20 points as the Willmar Cardinals tipped Central Lakes Conference rival Alexandria 70-58 in girls basketball on Tuesday.

Smith also pulled down 15 rebounds to spark Willmar 32-22 advantage on the glass.

Evans played a fine all-around game: the senior point guard delivered eight steals, five assists and five rebounds.

When she drew her fourth foul -- a soft foul on an offensive rebound, Willmar was leading 47-31. In no time, Alex cut seven points off the Willmar lead and coach Brad Atchison hustled Evans back into the game at 9:46 and leading 49-40.

Alexandria got to within seven points with just under two minutes, but with 1:15 left Evans intercepted a pass at the free throw line and drove the distance for a lay-up and a 63-53 Willmar lead.

Alexandria had to adjust to the absence of 1,000-point scorer Angela Christianson.

The 6-foot junior guard, who was averaging 33 points and 10 rebounds in the first four games, was diagnosed with mono at an afternoon doctor's appointment and will be out two weeks, according to Alex coach Wendy Kohler.

Willmar's half-court offense worked the ball in for close-range baskets by Emily Nelson (seven points) and Jena Thomspon (14 points and seven rebounds).

Willmar went 22-13 on a Evans dish-off to Thompson and one of Evans' two 3-pointers. Alex quickly cut the lead to 26-24 on four consecutive long shots, three of them treys by Gracie Bruzek. She rang up 17 points before fouling out.

Willmar 70, Alex 58

Alexandria (3-1, 3-2) 26 32 -- 58

Willmar (3-1, 4-1) 35 35 -- 70

ALEXANDRIA - 23-46 FG (4-5 3-pt); 8-14 FT; 22 rebounds; 18 fouls ... Scoring: Chelsey Richardson 2, Kate Gearman 10, Alicia Montbriand 7, Gracie Bruzek 17, Alli Haar 6, Sam Trumm 7, Ally Teclaw 9 ... 3-point shots: Bruzek 3, Gearman 1 ... Rebound leaders: Montbriand 6, Teclaw 6, Trumm 4 ... Assist leaders: Bruzek 6, Gearman 3, Trumm 3 ... Steal leaders: Bruzek 6, Trumm 4

WILLMAR - 27-55 FG (2-5 3-pt); 14-21 FT; 32 rebounds; 15 fouls ... Scoring: Kelsey Evans 20, Mariel Aamot 4, Lesley Christianson 2, Hannah Smith 20, Emily Nelson 7, Hannah Murphy 3, Jenna Thompson 14... 3-point shots: Evans 2... Rebound leaders: Smith 15, Thompson 7, Evans 5 ... Assist leaders: Evans 5, Nelson 5, Aamot 3... Steal leaders: Evans 8, Aamot 2, Smith 2, Nelson 2 ... Blocked shots: Nelson 2