Western Christian upsets top ranked IC Regina Girls to move to 2 - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Western Christian upsets top ranked IC Regina Girls to move to 2A Finals

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Western Christian will end the season in a spot that's become quite familiar -- the Class 2A state championship game.

   Ashtyn Veerbeek tied a 2A tournament record with 31 points and fourth-ranked Western Christian dominated play under the basket in a 71-49 semifinal victory over No. 1 Iowa City Regina.

  Veerbeek, a junior who has committed to Nebraska, knocked down 11 of 19 shots, grabbed 10 rebounds and blocked six shots. Erika Feenstra added 17 points for the Wolfpack, Karsyn Winterfeld scored 11 and Jessi DeJager had eight.

   Western, the state runner-up last season, is in the finals for the five time in six years. The Wolfpack won the title in 2012, 2013 and 2014.

   With three starters taller than any player Regina could put in the lineup, the Wolfpack pounded the glass for a 38-28 rebounding advantage and scored on a succession of layups and shots in the paint.

   The youthful Regals, who started only one senior, struggled against that height and only sophomore Alex Wiese was effective, finishing with 22 points and 14 rebounds. Sarah Lehman scored nine for Regina, while Mary Crompton and Kennedy Wallace each had five.

   Veerbeek scored 10 points in the opening quarter to help Western built a 20-7 lead. The Wolfpack never led by fewer than 11 points the rest of the way.

   Along with her strong play inside, the 6-foot-2 Veerbeek also is a skilled ball handler who often brings the ball up the floor. She made one particularly slick move in the second quarter when she drove in from the right side, slipped around a defender on the block, reached back and flicked in an underhanded shot off the glass.

   Western Christian takes a 24-2 record into the title game at 8 p.m. Friday. Regina, which reached the semifinals for the second straight year, finishes 26-1.

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