Clayton at McDonell girls basketball 12-2-17

McDonell's Abby Opsal drives in the lane against Clayton's Kiana Fall on Saturday at McDonell.

SPENCER FLATEN, The Herald

The McDonell girls basketball team showed on Saturday that it’s capable of bouncing back in a big way.

The Macks used outstanding defense to take down state-ranked Clayton 45-35 at McDonell for their second win of the season.

“The girls came out with a lot of energy and a lot of focus,” McDonell coach Don Cooper said. “They came ready to play...it was really good to see. They played exceptional defense tonight.”

Megan Baier led the charge for a balanced Macks offense with 13 points. Grace Mrozinski poured in nine points of her own, and Abby Wampler added seven.

McDonell opened the game on an 8-0 run, spurred by several defensive stops in the first few minutes of the game.

“(The run) impacted us a lot. That was a quick and fast start, which is what we need to get up on them,” Cooper said.

The win over Clayton—ranked No. 2 in Division 5 in the first WisSports.net state coaches poll of the season—came on the heels of a narrow 56-52 loss to Stanley-Boyd on Friday night.

“It was really good the way the girls came out and played. They used that energy and focus, and it was really good to see,” Cooper said.

The Macks (2-1, ranked No. 7 in Division 5) had the added motivation of a loss to the Bears (2-1) on the volleyball court.

Clayton defeated McDonell in the Division 4 sectional semifinals in late October in a heartbreaker for the Macks. They got a little bit of payback on Saturday.

“A little makeup on the volleyball game,” Cooper said.

Abby Opsal and Olivia Kressin both had six points for McDonell. Peyton Swoboda scored four.

McDonell hosts Thorp on Tuesday night.

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