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E-TC’s Elise Besonen breaks down game-winner vs. Baraga

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JEFFERS, Mich. (WJMN) – Ewen Trout Creek senior guard, Elise Besonen, has proven time and time again that she’s one of the most talented hoopers in all of the U.P.

Besonen’s basketball resume is impressive, but her heroics in the Panthers, 45-43, win over Baraga Monday night in the regional semifinals could be her best accomplishment.

Ewen – Trout creek found themselves fighting for their season late in their regional semifinal game against Baraga. After a clutch bucket to tie the game up at 43, the Panthers would clamp down and get a defensive stop.

That set the stage for one of the biggest shots in Ewen- Trout Creek girls basketball program history.

“We were looking to get the last shot, and even if we don’t get a shot off, just make sure that they don’t have a chance to get a shot off. So, we wanted to end the game with that possession,” said Besonen.

The Panthers broke their huddle and with sixteen seconds remaining and inbounded the ball. Besonen bringing the ball up the court.

“I was keeping an eye on the clock. I think at about five or seven seconds we were looking to attack off Abbie LeGault’s ball screen, either to create a shot for somebody, for myself, or to whoever we could get one too,” said Besonen.

Besonen would use the screen set by her teammate, take two dribbles and rise up over her defender.

“I was just hoping to get it off and it felt pretty good. So, I was pretty confident that it was a good look,” said Besonen.

The ball would fall through the net as time expired sending the Panthers onto the regional finals.

“It was a great feeling. I mean the game was, we were down a few times by about seven points and just fighting to get back into the game and in the fourth quarter, there was a lot of back and forth. Just really grinding out a game like that and having an opportunity to advance, it was just a great feeling,” said Besonen.

Besonen said she was proud of how her team fought after falling behind several times throughout the game. She said the adversity the Panthers have faced throughout the season from the 2020 pandemic has added to the team’s mental toughness.

“Just having the mental toughness carrying through with all the Covid related pauses and cancellations that we had to deal with was really big in that game because we’re used to having to battle for stuff now and it just, kind of, translated into that game I think,” said Besonen.

The Panthers will look to capture a regional crown Wednesday against Carney-Nadeau.

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