The Caledonia High School girls basketball team hasn’t lost a game in almost three months, but it will face another team with a big winning streak in an MSHSL Class AA state quarterfinal at Williams Arena on Wednesday.
The fourth-seeded Warriors (24-4) are making their first state appearance since losing a quarterfinal game in 2011 and open this time against fifth-seeded Proctor (24-6), which has won nine games in a row.
The Rails are playing in their third state tournament and first since 2001. They swept through their section tournament by winning games by an average of 21 points and all of them by at least 14.
“We’ve seen them (Proctor) on film, and I think we broke them down pretty good,” Caledonia coach Scott Sorenson said. “They have two strong post players, and they’re a team that’s in the state tournament for a reason. They’ve played a good schedule, and it could go either way between a No. 4 and a No. 5 seed.”
Proctor’s top scorers are junior Sam Pogatchnik (15.6 points per game) and junior Morgan Hylund (9.2 ppg). Pogatchnik also leads the team with her average of 6.9 rebounds per game.
Sorenson has been preparing his team for not only the physical part of the game, but the mental aspect. In order to have a determined mindset, Sorenson has been coaching his team in eliminating distractions and staying relaxed in the week leading up to one of the biggest games this group of Warriors has ever played.
Developing a relaxed mentality during a time like this is tough, but the experienced coach knows what it takes.
“We’ve just got them staying in a routine,” he said. “We’ve got them going to their first two classes (Wednesday) and we’ve been letting them know what to expect and how to get into a mindset of relaxation during a week full of distractions. Right now as far as everything is concerned, we’re just staying in a routine.”