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Cardinals lock up Chargers

WILLMAR — Opening the game with a 22-2 run, that was just the start of a suffocating defensive effort Saturday by Willmar.

In their home opener against Dassel-Cokato, the Cardinals had 20 steals and held the Chargers to eight second-half points in a 78-23 drubbing at Willmar High School.

Hannah Johnson was effective all over the court with 10 points, eight assists and four steals. Abby Berskow and Sadie Raitz both had three steals, with Berskow also adding five assists.

Carly Wedel was 6 of 7 shooting for a Willmar-best 12 points. Ashley Prahl added 10 points, and Mackenzie Jones chipped in with nine in the victory, which saw the Cardinals lead by as much as 55 points.

In total, 13 of Willmar's 14 players got on the scorer's sheet on Saturday.

"The girls really ran the floor extremely well and we rewarded our teammates with some great passes," said Cardinals head coach Dustin Carlson. "I thought the best thing we did was pass the ball while running the floor."

Opening the season at 2-0, fifth-ranked (Class 3A) Willmar begins Central Lakes Conference play on Friday at Sartell.

Willmar 78,

Dassel-Cokato 23

D-C (0-3) 15 8 — 23

Willmar (2-0) 37 41 — 78

DASSEL-COKATO - Scoring: Camryn Patten 2, Kezia Lee 7, Lora Mayfield 1, Coriena Miller 4, Katelyn Lee 11 ... 3-point shots: NA ... Rebound leader: NA ... Assist leader: NA ... Steal leader: NA

WILLMAR - Scoring: Abby Berskow 4, Megan Engel 4, Amanda Mathiasen 2, Katelyn Murphy 6, Mackenzie Jones 9, Addi Mitteness 5, Sadie Raitz 3, Callie Slagter 3, Madi Linbo 8, Hannah Johnson 10, Carly Wedel 12, Ashley Prahl 10, Brooke Wittwer 2 ... 3-point shots: Berskow 1, Jones 1, Mitteness 1, Slagter 1, Linbo 2, Johnson 1, Prahl 2 ... Rebound leader: Five with 3 ... Assist leader: Johnson 8, Berskow 5 ... Steal leader: Johnson 4, Berskow 3