Fans raise over $1,500 for Wadena family

Photo by Chad Koenen
Lily Fraki hit three 3-pointers in last week’s win over Wadena-Deer Creek.

The Henning girls basketball team only had one game this past week, but it was a big conference game Friday night against a good Wadena-Deer Creek team that had beat the Hornets earlier in the season. 

Before getting into the game details and stats head coach Mike Hepola wanted to share about a special evening as it was a boys/girls double-header. One of Wadena-Deer Creek’s girls basketball player’s family is going through a difficult time right now with her dad suffering from cancer and entering hospice care.  

Amy Severson, one of Henning’s parents, has worked with that gentlemen in the past and helped organize a night in which people were asked to wear gray in support of that family. Amy’s daughter Emma Severson, Henning’s lone senior on the girls basketball team did a great job of making a speech in between the girls and boys game. That’s when those in attendance did a bucket passing, which raised more than $1,500 in less than 5 minutes in support of the Packer family.  

Hepola said a special thank you goes out to Amy and Emma Severson for the great job of leading this effort.  In a time where there is definitely disagreements and stress happening all over including in the city and area, it was once again truly amazing to see the support and the communities coming together for this family. He said it was also great to see so many Henning people showing their support for someone they’ve never met in person, but simply doing what they consider the “right thing” to do. 

Hepola said he finds it truly an honor to teach and coach in a community that once again rallies for the cause.  So thank you all for your support this evening and your overall support over the years in many situations like this. Hepola said he is very proud to be a Henning Hornet.  

Now onto the actual basketball action from Friday night, which was just as special as the community support shown.  With three great days of practice leading up to this game the girls really bought into Henning’s game plan both offensively and defensively. They did an amazing job of playing as a team and it never hurts to hit the shots at over a 53 percent mark either. A couple games ago the Hornets got after the team as they only had 4 assists in an entire ball game. The team talked about how there was too much one-on-one play and not enough team continuity happening on the court. In this one the girls did such a great job of attacking and then finding the open teammate and then that teammate knocking down the shot as we had 17 assists on 23 made shots, which is great teamwork leading to a solid 62-30 win.  

Ally Hart got Henning going with a great attack and a 3-point play right off the opening tip and a pass from Faith Fisher. Hepola said he truly believed that got the Hornets rolling for the entire evening.  

Fisher hit an incredible 6 three-pointers in the first half alone to lead Henning with 18 first half points and allowed them to hold a solid 39-22 lead at half. Lily Fraki also hit two big 3-pointers in that opening half to finish with 6 points while Hart, Natalie Eckhoff and Lyvia Misegades all had 5 first half points.  

In the second half the Hornets really turned up their defense as Henning held Wadena-Deer Creek to 8 total points in the half. The Hornets continued to score at a decent clip by finishing with 62 total points.  

The Hornets went an incredible 13-25 from the 3-point line with Fisher hitting 6, Fraki 3, Natalie Eckhoff 2, Aaliyah Olson and Ella Missling each with 1.  The girls school record for 3-pointers in a game is 7 so Fisher finished just 1 shy of that and will hopefully have another crack at it soon.  

Individually, the Hornets were led by Faith Fisher with 20 points and 6 assists on a great night. Hart joined Fisher in double figures finishing with 13 points and also 5 assists. Misegades just missed double-figures with 9 points, Natalie Eckhoff had a great night off the bench with 8 points.

Misegades finished with 7 points and 8 rebounds, while Ella Missling and Aaliyah Olson rounded out the scoring with 3 points each.  

Again a great overall team effort on both ends of the court in this one and something Hepola said he hopes the team can build off of as they have two tough games this upcoming week against Browerville at home on Tuesday and at New York Mills on Thursday. The win brings Henning’s overall record to 12-7 and 7-4 in the Park Region Conference.  

Individual stats

Faith Fisher 20 points, 1 rebound, 6 assists, 1 steal

Lily Fraki 9 points, 3 rebounds, 3 assists, 1 steal

Ella Missling 3 points, 1 rebound

Ally Hart 12 points, 3 rebounds, 5 assists

Emma Severson 1 rebound, 1 assist

Aaliyah Olson 3 points, 1 rebound, 1 steal

Natalie Eckhoff 3 points, 1 rebound, 1 steal

Lyvia Misegades 7 points, 8 rebounds, 1 assist, 1 steal

Ava Eckhoff 1 assist