Johnson's shot rallies Freedom past Luxemburg-Casco
FREEDOM (WLUK) -- After falling behind by 13 points in the second half Freedom's chances of beating Luxemburg-Casco looked dim, especially they way Cassie Schiltz was playing for the Spartans.
However, the Irish never wavered, kept plugging and rode the shoulders of two outstanding freshman.
Gabby Johnson capped a 15-point performance with a coast-to-coast basket as time expired and Callie Genke scored 26 points as Freedom rallied for a thrilling 67-65 win over the Spartans in North Eastern Conference action.
"Coach called timeout and we set up our play," Johnson said. "We got outside shots so we knew the inside would be open so coach said take it to the basket and that's what I did."
"The last 10 minutes of the second half Gabby got to the basket so we felt comfortable with that," Freedom coach Mike Vander Loop said of the final play. "We've been working on late-game situations in practice and that was one of the options we were looking at.
"I told the girls repeatedly, we just need to get stops. We're going to score enough points to win, but it's a matter of ending possessions with rebounds and getting enough stops; something good will happen."
Freedom (11-5) has won six straight games and reached this position partly because the way Genke played in the second half. Genke, who's already received offers from Green Bay, Marquette, Wisconsin, Iowa and Louisville, scored 17 points after intermission, offsetting Schiltz's 29 points, showing off her game by drilling three-pointers, scoring on drives and scoring inside.
During Freedom's six-game winning streak Genke has scored at least 16 points in each game.
"Callie's a player, strong in many facets of the game, and a student of the game," Vander Loop said. "She continues to get better. "
Freedom is out of the NEC title race, but the Irish are starting to play like a team nobody wants to see in the postseason. Genke and Johnson are playing well beyond their years.
"Our team has jelled really nicely, we're working hard at practice every day and coming together," Johnson said.
"I think we are moving in he right direction," Vander Loop said. "We've made progress over the last two weeks."
Follow Doug Ritchay on Twitter @dougritchay