For the past four years, Brookfield Central has set the standard for girls basketball in the Greater Metro Conference.
And while Menomonee Falls has improved greatly since the beginning of the year, the Indians still have a ways to go.
The Lancers won the conference title for the fourth consecutive season with a 47-37 victory over the Indians Friday night. Brookfield Central improved to 12-1 in the conference and 15-6 overall. Menomonee Falls dropped to 8-4 in the Greater Metro and 11-9 overall.
For senior guard Valerierose Agnello, the victory capped a fabulous four-year experience at Brookfield Central. “It’s been a great ride for us,” she said after the team’s celebration that included the traditional cutting of the net. “We’ve built quite a legacy here.”
For Brookfield Central, that legacy includes two trips to the state tournament in the last three years. And for Agnello, one of the team’s captains, a third trip to state would be just grand.
“It’s been a great year for us so far,” Agnello said. “Hopefully, we have a lot more basketball to play this season.”
Although the Lancers season has been successful, Brookfield Central coach Dan Wandrey said his team has had its share of ups and downs. “We’ve been like a chameleon this season. We had some games where we’ve scored in the 30s. Then we play Vincent and beat them.” That victory, a 59-57 decision at Brookfield Central on Dec. 28, is one of only two losses for the No. 5-ranked Vikings. Brookfield Central is ranked No. 15 in the poll, conducted by the Wisconsin Basketball Coaches Association.
Although the Lancers held a sizeable lead for most of the game, they could not shake off the feisty Indians.
“I know they like to call us a physical team, but they also play physical,” Wandrey said. “They have a lot of good athletes on their team. They played us really tough.”
In many ways, the Lancers were their own worst enemy. The missed several easy shots in the first half and struggled throughout on the foul line.
And while it is clear that the Indians have improved, that’s not good enough anymore.
“There are no more moral victories for us,” Falls coach Craig Amundson said. “We didn’t play well and they did a good job of exposing our weaknesses.”
The Lancers held an 8-5 lead in the first quarter. Brookfield Central held a 10-point lead at halftime. “We missed a lot of good looks,” Amundson said. “And we didn’t rebound very well. Brookfield Central boxes out very well.”
Falls played tenaciously all the way through, but could not get closer than eight points in the second half.
Menomonee Falls: 5--7--7-18—37
Brookfield Central: 8-14-11- 14—47
Menomonee Falls: Robertson 2 0-1 5, Dennis 0 2-2 2, Olzelberger 2 0-0 4, Defnet 2 7-8 11, Bullock 1 2-4 4, Poole 1 0-0 2, Carlson 1 0-0 2, Crownover 4 0-0 8. Totals 12 12-17 37.
Brookfield Central: Fotsch 5 0-0 10, Schneider 2 0-0 5, 0 4-7 4, Agnello 3 1-2 8, Flynn 2 0-0 5, Liewen 3 9-17 15. Totals 15 14-26 47.
Total fouls: Brookfield Central 21, Menomonee Falls 18. Fouled out: Menomonee Falls: Bullock, Brookfield Central: Agnello.