The Owatonna girls basketball team shot better from the floor the and the free throw line in the second half to turn a first-half deficit into a come-from-behind 52-45 win at Winona on Friday. It's the Huskies second straight win heading into a tough week of games against Big Nine Conference leaders.

On Friday, OHS shot just 9-for-29 overall on field goals in the first half, only connected on one of five three-point tries, and missed seven of their nine free throw attempts. Owatonna's struggles, plus ten turnovers allowed the one-win Winhawks to go on an 15-0 run and take a 26-15 lead late in the first half.

Owatonna built a little before before half, outscoring Winona 6-2 and trailed 28-21 at the break. Senior Kaehlah Simmons scored 15 first half points for the 'Hawks and was held to three in the second half.

OHS junior Sarah Kingland led the team with 12 first half points and had 18 for the game. Several other players stepped up after halftime and Owatonna's shooting success spiraled up. They were 10-for-17 from the floor, 2-for-5 on three's, and 9-for-13 from the charity stripe.

Sophomore Ari Shornock scored seven of her 11 points in the second half, including 4-for-4 from the free throw line. She also grabbed several rebounds. Sophomore Lexi Mendenhall added seven points and double-digit rebounds. Sophomore Taylor Schlauderaff scored all seven of her points in the second half on some nice moves to the basket.

After hitting 11 field goals in the first half, Winona (1-13, 1-9) made just seven in the second half and were just 1-for-14 on three-point tries for the game.

Owatonna coach Lindsey Hugstad-Vaa likes how the team's offense is progressing, "I think that the girls are finally settling in and realizing we need to show up every single game and play our hardest and there's nothing to be scared of. Going into second round of conference will be much better. It's just gelling and the girls are starting to play well together with the rotations that we figured out."

OHS (4-9, 4-6 Big Nine) hosts Rochester John Marshall (9-5, 7-3) Tuesday, January 14 and Mankato West (10-4, 8-2) Friday, January 17.

Note: Stats are unofficial.


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