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Eastview Lightning comes back to win Class AAAA championship

After a lackluster semi final game against Eden Prairie on Thursday , Madison Guebert scored 29 points, including a game winning lay up with :48 left to lead the Eastview Lightning to a 64-61 come from behind win over the Bloomington Kennedy Eagles in the Class AAAA championship game Saturday night at Williams Arena in Minneapolis.

It was the first championship for the Apple Valley school in its seventh trip to state and third title game. Eastview finished second in 2000 and 2003.

The Eagles got off to a 6-0 start as Kenisha Bell scored three straight baskets. Hana Metoxen would put the Lightning with 15:31 left. Tonoia Wade and Guebert would alternate three pointers and Wade would hit another one to take a 12-6 lead. Bell would help ring up the Kennedy side of the scoreboard as the Eagles went on a 7-0 run. Guebert would hit her second three pointer and Lasha Wright-Ponder would score four straight points. But Eastview came back on a pair of threes from Kari Opatz that would put them on an 8-0 run. The run would advance to 10 on Megan Boehm's basket. Guebert would tie the game at 26 with her third three pointer and Wright-Ponder would score to put the Eagles back in front. They would lead at halftime 37-32.

Guebert would get the Lightning offense going, scoring :11 into the second half. Isieoma Odor would keep the Eagles in front with five straight points. But the Lightning, whose only loss was to Kennedy on February 14th would make a comeback. Guebert would hit her fourth three pointer and two free throws from Emee Udo would cut the lead to five. Bell would score to push the lead back to seven. Udo would be fouled after a steal and she was awarded two shots. Shemade them both. Metoxen scored to trim the lead to one and Guebet would score the game winner with :48 left. Opatz would hit two free throws to give Eastview a three point lead and Kennedy still had a chance to send the game into overtime. However, Tonoia Wade missed a three pointer and a group of white and blue jerseys began to celebrate their first state title.

Other players in double figures for the Lightning ere Opatz with 13 points. Metoxen added 11.

Bell led the Eagles with 24 points. Odor and Wright-Ponder had 11 apiece and Wade scored 10.

Eastview head coach Melissa Guebert mentioned how important winning their first title has been since taking over the coaching reins from Paul Goetz. "It gave us credibility and a lot of respect. We are a great team."

Madison Guebert stated how she bounced back after a rough semi final game. "We really moved the ball way better." In the third place game at Ganglehoff Center on the Concordia University campus in St. Paul, Eden Prairie beat Lakeville North 4844.

Saturday's attendance was 7,954. The total tournament attendance was 31,676.

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