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Eric Peterson, Published March 07 2012

Comraderie lifts West Fargo girls to their 21-1 season

WEST FARGO - Barb Metcalf has a bulletin board in her office with press clippings from this season. She added a shiny green three-leaf clover to the board prior to last week’s East Region girls basketball tournament.

“A three-leaf because we make our own luck,” Metcalf said with a smile. “It’s a special time of the year, the excitement.”

The Packers are in the midst of a special season. West Fargo (21-1) won its first region tournament championship since 1998 when girls basketball was played in the fall. That was also the last time the team had a 20-win season.

“We’ve really just stuck together as a team and worked hard in practice,” said senior forward Rachel Hummel, who averages 4.2 points and 4.5 rebounds per game. “We really just clicked.”

The Packers won the EDC regular-season title even though they had just one player in the top 10 in the league in scoring. Junior guard Lexi Lennon ranked ninth in the EDC with a shade over 12 points per game. No West Fargo player ranked in the top 10 in rebounding.

West Fargo’s strength is how the parts of the team have fit together to create one strong unit.

“They’re a puzzle,” Metcalf said. “They’re different pieces. Different shapes, different sizes, different types of threats … when you get kids who buy into their role, that’s pretty unstoppable.”

That on-court chemistry starts off the court. Metcalf has posters on her office wall that document a scavenger hunt the team did at a local sports store in December.

“We do neat things like that,” Metcalf said.

“We’re not just about one person,” added senior Erin Krogh. “We’re about everyone. If you get along with your teammates, then they are going to bring out the best in you.”

Krogh said one of the things she will remember about this season is the bus rides. Situations like that where she got to spend time with her teammates.

“Girls just always say just funny stuff on the bus and then we get sack lunches, too,” Krogh said with a smile.

“Everyone says we’re like sisters,” Hummel added. “It’s just always fun.”

That 1998 West Fargo team also won the Class A state championship, which was the last state crown in program history.

That 1998 team also won 23 games to tie a program record. This year’s West Fargo team could set a new single-season wins record if it can take home a state championship.

“This is a special group of girls,” Metcalf said. “It’s been a magical season.”

Readers can reach Forum reporter

Eric Peterson at (701) 241-5513.

Peterson’s blog can be found

at peterson.areavoices.com

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