Watch the game in the video player starting at approx. 12:45 p.m. after the conclusion of the Division 5 game.
Green Bay, Wisc. (WXOW)- Aquinas and Melrose-Mindoro both came away with wins in the Division 4 state semi-finals on Thursday evening. The Blugolds defeated Milwaukee Academy of Science 77-59. The Mustangs defeated Colby 63-44. The wins set up a re-match between Aquinas and Melrose-Mindoro in the Division 4 state championship game.
Last year Aquinas came away with a 68-52 victory. This year is different for both teams as Aquinas returns the core of their team, but they did lose four key seniors to graduation. They have relied on different players to step up game in and game out, such as Megan Schedit, Kayla Bahr and Alaina Bagniefski.
As for Melrose-Mindoro, the same starting five as last year will once gain take the court. However, they now have a year of experience under their belt.
Both teams are eager for Saturday’s meeting.
“We’ve wanted the opportunity since last year at this time,” Melrose-Mindoro Head Coach Joey Arneson said.
“We want to see what we can do against the best,” Arneson added. ” Right now, Aquinas is the best. They are the number one team in the state. We just want to see where we compare with them. I know the whole community, the whole state wants to see this game again. We are certainly excited and hopeful we will put on a good show.”
“Going into the game, we wanted to take one thing at a time going into Colby,” Melrose-Mindoro Junior Mesa Byom said. ” We knew we had to take them down first. Getting another chance at Aquinas, that’s awesome. I’m really excited for that game. Hopefully it will be a good one.”
“I’m excited about it because I think both teams know each other really well,” Aquinas Head Coach Dave Donarski said. ” Ironically, it’s a rivalry, and we are both local teams. So, to come down to Green Bay and finish this thing, I think will be a whole lot of fun for everybody in our area.”
The Mustangs commented on what they believe they have to do differently this time around.
“This year we got to limit our turnovers,” Arneson said. ” We are a little deeper this year, so we have a little more bench depth that will give us a slight edge. Let’s be honest, we have to hit our shots. Last year we got pretty cold for an extended amount of time in the first half, and we can’t have those long cold spells against a team like Aquinas. You got to hit your shots, early and often. The ball has got to fall to win the game, and that is really going to be the main thing.”
This game is set to tip off at 12:45 PM on Saturday at the Resch Center.