Pipers locked in during the final stretch

Senior forward Lydia Lecher readies at the line for two penalty shots during Saturday’s big victory over Macalester.
Senior forward Lydia Lecher readies at the line for two penalty shots during Saturday’s big victory over Macalester.
Peter Schmitz

In a transitional year for the Pipers, they currently sit at 10–11 overall and boast an 8–9 record against conference foes. Despite their record, the Pipers are a dark horse contender for the Minnesota Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAC) playoffs, which they are currently the last team in at sixth place in the MIAC.
“We have been inconsistent with our wins and losses this year but I believe we are a great team and we will show that in the playoffs”, junior point guard Kate Trachsel said.
Before the postseason, the Pipers will need to take care of MIAC rivals St. Scholastica and Gustavus Adolphus next week on Feb. 14 and Feb. 17 respectively.
“I expect the rest of the regular season to hopefully go well so we can keep our sixth place spot in the conference,” senior guard Michaela Stamer said. “If all goes well, we will make the playoffs and test how far we can go, which is always such an exciting time of year.”
The Pipers have showcased their potential since the start of the season with a shattering 78–36 victory over Martin Luther College. Just a week later they delivered a similar verdict to Saint Marys, beating them by 24 points to start off 2–0.
Their most recent blowout was against longtime rival Augsburg University, where the Pipers cruised past the Auggies on the road by 24 points.
“One of my favorite memories of this season was beating Augsburg. They have historically been a really hard team for us to beat, and they actually ended our season two years ago,” Stamer said. “We went there and played really well, and finally got a win at Augsburg which was awesome.”
Over the summer, the Pipers selected longtime assistant Joshua Hersch to take command of the program following the departure of Alex Focke.
“Coach Hersch was actually my AAU coach in high school which is now my sister’s AAU coach as well so I have known him for a while,” Trachsel said. “He is one of the main reasons I came to this school because I transferred from St. Thomas where I didn’t play basketball, but I really missed it and I reached out to Josh and he told me to just come check out Hamline.”
Hersch’s ability to connect with players has helped smoothen the coaching transition. With Hersch’s promotion, the program welcomed two assistant coaches; Lindsey Bernardy, a former Piper who graduated last spring, and former Golder Gopher Katie Borowicz both joined the team in the fall.
This past Saturday, the program honored the Pipers three seniors who will be graduating shortly after seasons end: Michaela Stamer, Lydia Lecher and Ally Thompson. The final score was a 55–46 victory over the Macalester Scots.
The battle against Macalester was also a part of Hamline’s “Race to 1,000 at Hutton Arena,” where the institution has been attempting all season long to pack the historic arena off Snelling Ave.
The efforts have come up short to this point, with 779 total fans attending the most recent attempt at achieving a quadruple digit audience.
“I have been really proud of the team this year. We have definitely had some rough patches where games didn’t go our way, but we have responded well,” Stamer said. “Our team continues to be a fun one to be a part of even when we don’t always get the outcome we want.”
The Pipers currently hold the final playoff spot in the MIAC with Augsburg hot on their tail. If the Pipers win at least one game, and the Auggies lose at least one, they will clinch the final seed in the tournament.
The Pipers will need to dominate in every facet to ensure they can not only clinch a playoff spot, but to then thrive in the MIAC tournament thereafter.

Story continues below advertisement
Leave a Comment
More to Discover

Comments (0)

All The Oracle Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *