Filipi, Aitchison spark Wave
The kick start to the East Grand Forks Senior High offense was shared by Brooke Filipi and McKenna Aitchison.
The duo combined to score 18 of the Green Wave's first 22 points Tuesday night. That led Senior High to a 22-7 lead and the Wave were never caught. They went on to beat visiting Crookston 63-49 in girls basketball.
Filipi and Aitchison feasted on layups in their fast start. With the exception of a 3-point basket by Aitchison, almost all of those 22 points by the two Wave players in the first 12 minutes were layups or short jump shots.
"They were our triggers,'' Senior High coach Jay Frydenlund said. "Brooke and McKenna were huge to our fast start, getting to the basket and finishing. They both finish well. That's the way they play. They've always been slashers, getting to the hoop.''
If the Filipi-Aitchison scoring punch wasn't enough, the stifling Wave defense also contributed as the Wave led 32-11 with two minutes left in the first half. Fifteen of those points came off Pirates turnovers.
"Their pressure took us out of we want to do,'' Crookston coach Darin Zimmerman said. "They (Wave) are good at what they do. They attack you. And we were too passive. We were a little afraid (of Senior High's pressure). And their length hurt us.''
Senior High led 38-20 at halftime and extended its lead to as much as 50-21 with 12 minutes remaining. Senior High still led 57-32 with 7:30 remaining before Crookston went on a game-closing 17-6 run to make the score close.
"That's who we are,'' Zimmerman said of the late run. "We didn't play the way we usually do for the first 29 minutes; give East Grand Forks credit for that. But we started to play harder and pick it up on the defensive end. We got more aggressive.''
Filipi finished with a game-high 17 points, with Aitchison finishing with 16. Haley Burger scored 10 points off the bench for the Wave.
Freshman Emma Borowicz had 14 points for the Pirates, with Rachel Hefta and Kasey Cwikla adding eight points each.
"We played well the first three-quarters of the game,'' Frydenlund said. "We shared the ball. We played good pressure defense and had them off balance. We didn't give them too many open looks at the basket in the first 27 minutes.''
Senior High improved to 4-1 while Crookston saw a three-game winning streak snapped in dropping to 3-2.