Girls State Basketball: Ankeny Sidelines Washington

By Jeff Linder, Reporter

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By Grant Burkhardt

This game was broadcast live on KCRG 9.2, just as every game of the girls and boys state tournaments will be.

DES MOINES, Iowa -- The Ankeny Hawkettes take good shots, make good shots.

Second-ranked Ankeny played from ahead virtually the whole way, converting 56 percent of its shots in a 66-58 victory over Cedar Rapids Washington in a Class 5A quarterfinal at the girls' state basketball tournament Wednesday afternoon at Wells Fargo Arena.

"They're such a tough team to get behind," said Washington Coach Frank Howell. "We battled the whole way, but we weren't able to get over that hump."

Ankeny (20-4) moves on to face No. 7 Southeast Polk (18-5) in a semifinal at 10 a.m. Friday. The Rams outlasted No. 5 Muscatine, 48-45, Wednesday.

The Hawkettes made 23 of 41 shots from the field, and were able to meet every challenge that the Warriors (17-7) posed.

"Washington played a great game, and they got us into foul trouble," said Ankeny Coach Scott DeJong. "But we have two senior guards who have had a special year, and they played that way again today."

That would be Brittany Hedrick (who made 7 of 9 field goals and all eight of her free throws in a 24-point outing) and Madi Robson (who posted 14 points and nine assists).

Meanwhile, Jaali Winters accumulated 17 points (making 7 of 9 from the floor), eight rebounds and seven blocks.

"She was good offensively and defensively," said Washington's Abby Herb.

Ankeny got out to a 10-3 lead, and had an answer every time Washington got close.

"We got in a hole, and couldn't get out," said Washington's Madison Kramer.

After falling behind 22-12, the Warriors got within four points on four occasions. But Hedrick scored the last four points of the half, and the Hawkettes took a 32-24 cushion into the locker room.

Then, three times in the third quarter, Washington pushed within three points, the last time at 37-34. Ankeny scored the next six points, though, for a nine-point advantage.

The Warriors got back within five, but Hedrick's 3-pointer late in the third quarter stretched it back to nine.

Washington didn't get closer than seven points again.

Aleena Hobbs led the Warriors with 21 points. Herb and Dani Franklin added 15 apiece. Herb grabbed seven boards.

Franklin was saddled with fouls much of the way and played just 20 minutes.

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