Laker women start tourney play
The 2008 Region XI Women’s Basketball Tournament begins play today.
While there are now 10 teams in Region XI’s Division II, only the top eight teams qualify for the tournament, which leaves Southwestern and league newcomer AIB out of the mix.
The top four teams in the region–Kirkwood, Iowa Central, Des Moines Area Community College and Marshalltown–all host their respective first-round games.
No. 5 seed Iowa Lakes (19-10, 10-8) opens the tournament at Marshalltown (20-10, 11-7).
The two teams will play for the right to likely play Kirkwood in the region semifinals, which will be held Friday on the DMACC campus in Boone.
Iowa Lakes and Marshalltown split their games this season with each team winning at home.
The Lakers won 78-68 in Estherville on Dec. 5 with the Tigers winning the rematch 72-55 on Jan. 23.
Iowa Lakes coach Brian Radtke said the difference in the two games was a slow start in Marshalltown. That loss also started a mini-slump.
“We didn’t play very well down there and that kind of went into the next couple games,” he said.
However, he said recently the Lakers are executing better and also performing better on the defensive end.
“The tournament is a whole different atmosphere,” he said.
Radtke said Marshalltown is similar to Iowa Lakes.
“They have a point guard that’s real quick and gets to the basket. They have good outside shooters and a girl who is very athletic and rebounds well,” he said.
The Tigers also have a post player that’s a threat.
“They’re a little quicker than we on on the outside, but have think we have more (presence) on the inside,” Radtke said.
The coach said if they can take care of the little things–controlling the boards and limiting the Tigers to just one shot per possession and executiing the offense, will prove keys for both teams.