Zion teams headed to nationals

Members of the Zion Lutheran School boys’ basketball team include, front row: coach Paul Malberg, Tristan Carlson, Zachary Thaemert, Brock Hoese, Branden Carlson, and coach Dylan Malberg; back row: Matthew Menth, Jeff Otterstatter, Riley Thomas, and Nate Truniger; not pictured: Masun Bentz.

Members of the Zion Lutheran School boys’ basketball team include, front row: coach Paul Malberg, Tristan Carlson, Zachary Thaemert, Brock Hoese, Branden Carlson, and coach Dylan Malberg; back row: Matthew Menth, Jeff Otterstatter, Riley Thomas, and Nate Truniger; not pictured: Masun Bentz.

Both the boys’ and girls’ basketball teams from Zion Lutheran School in Mayer had successful weekends at the Minnesota Lutheran State Tournament, held March 1-3 at Concordia University – St. Paul.

The boys’ team finished as runners up, while the girls placed third, each team winning three of four games during the tournament. The boys defeated Rochester Central, Trinity St. Francis, and Risen Savior Mankato before losing the title game to Trinity Waconia.

The Zion Lutheran girls’ team placed third in the state tournament and earned an invitation to nationals last week. The team includes, front row: Mya Chmielewski, Katelyn Shipler, Kiley Dalchow, Megan Thomas, Clara Hipp, Melanie Miller, and coach Jordan Hucky; back row: coach Gordy Chmielewski, Emily Carlson, Rachel Roepke, Amber Olson, Kate Strehlke, Olivia Quiram, Natalie Poppler, and coach Jennie Winter.

The Zion Lutheran girls’ team placed third in the state tournament and earned an invitation to nationals last week. The team includes, front row: Mya Chmielewski, Katelyn Shipler, Kiley Dalchow, Megan Thomas, Clara Hipp, Melanie Miller, and coach Jordan Hucky; back row: coach Gordy Chmielewski, Emily Carlson, Rachel Roepke, Amber Olson, Kate Strehlke, Olivia Quiram, Natalie Poppler, and coach Jennie Winter.

The girls won over Rochester Central and St. James Northrup before falling to Bloomington Lutheran. The Zion Mustangs defeated Emanuel Hamburg for third place. Last week, both teams then received invitations to compete in the National Lutheran Basketball Tournament on March 21-24 at Valparaiso University in Indiana. Only four previous Zion teams have qualified for the national tournament, including the 2004 and 2012 boys’ teams, and the 1996 and 2004 girls’ teams.

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