CAMBRIDGE — Lake Mills is the third-ranked team in the WisSports.net Division 3 Coaches Poll and the L-Cats got tested on the road by Cambridge before narrowly escaping with their ninth straight win to open the season.
The L-Cats trailed by double digits in the first half and junior point guard Julianna Wagner hit two crucial free throws with 30 seconds left to secure a 67-63 non-conference victory over Cambridge on Thursday.
Wagner’s free throws gave Lake Mills the lead after it trailed by four with under two minutes to play. Sophomore forward McClain Mahone also knocked down a pair of free throws late.
“Defensively we had stretches where we played well, we just weren’t locked in like we needed to be,” Lake Mills girls basketball coach Brandon Siska said. “We had to deal with some adversity, we were losing late and didn’t have the momentum. We found a way to make some plays down the stretch. Thought Cambridge played their tails off tonight.”
Sophomore guard Taylor Roughen and Wagner each scored 16, sophomore center Vivian Guerrero had 15, 10 of which came in the first half, and Mahone added 13 for Lake Mills (9-0).
Wagner scored 12 of her 16 points in the second half.
“We got a few points in transition and hit a few 3s. We had to work for every point,” Siska said. “It wasn’t easy to pack the paint in. With their system, (Kelly Cunningham) coaches them well. Even with the 67 points, it felt like an off night for us.”
Cambridge (1-5) had three in double-figures scoring led by Ashlynn Jarlsberg with 16. Olivia Williams scored 15 and Mayah Holzhueter tallied 12 before fouling out.
Lake Mills extended its lead to more then 10 in the second half, but the Blue Jays kept hanging around.
“Cambridge is way better than their record, they shot the lights out of it tonight,” Siska said. “They packed the paint in and took away our dribble drive stuff.”
The L-Cats host Belleville on Dec. 27 at 3 p.m. in the Lake Mills Holiday Classic.
LAKE MILLS 67, CAMBRIDGE 63
Lake Mills 34 33 — 67
Cambridge 29 34 — 63
Lake Mills (fg-ftm-tp) — Roughen 5-4-16, Wagner 5-5-16, Pitta 2-0-4, Guerrero 6-2-15, Lamke 1-0-3, Mahone 5-2-13. Totals 24 13-20 67.
Cambridge (fg-ftm-tp) — Jarlsberg 6-2-16, Korth 3-0-6, Holzhueter 6-0-12, Stenklyft 4-0-9, Williams 7-0-15, Bolger 1-0-2, Hommen 1-0-3. Totals 28 2-6 63.
3-point goals — LM (Roughen 2, Wagner, Guerrero, Lamke, Mahone) 6; C (Jarlsberg 2, Stenklyft, Williams, Hommen) 5. Total fouls — LM 12, C 19.