The Staples girls basketball team lost its fifth straight game Monday with a 68-45 loss at St. Joseph to finish the regular season at 8-12.

Staples senior captain Julie Strickland said, "I was a bit upset with the outcome of the game, it was disappointing not to be able to win our final game of the season."

Going into the game the Lady Wreckers knew they were facing a tough team. St. Joe's was ranked the pre-season number one team.

Staples Coach Ed Huydic said, "We knew what we were getting in to. They're a good team and it was their senior night. We wanted to take away their perimeter shooting, and limit them to one shot each possession."

The Lady Wreckers struggled right out of the gate as St. Joseph took a 13-0 lead. St. Joe's junior Nancy Stablein scored 13 of her team's 18 first quarter points.

In the second quarter, sophomore Erica Stein (14 points, 4 rebounds, 2 steals, 2 assists) led the Lady Wreckers during their first run of the night. Huydic said, "Stein helped lower a 20 point deficit to 10 by knocking down threes." However Staples was unable to keep the momentum as they continued to make careless turnovers and miss open looks.

In the second half, Staples continued to struggle as Stablein and the Cadettes dominated the court. Huydic said, "We tried a full court press, half court press, two different zones, an isolation zone, but it was their night. Everything they put up was good." The Lady Wreckers could not find a way to stop Stablein and she finished with 27 points.

However junior Jess Coelho made a great comeback performance. After being out the entire season with an ACL tear, Coelho has seen few minutes in the past three games. Against St. Joseph, she clocked 18 minutes and contributed seven points, four rebounds, and three assists.

Senior captain Nicole Brill said, "I thought our foul shots were great in today's game."

Coelho led the way from the line going 5-6.

Other contributors for Staples were Brill (four points, five rebounds, two steals, three assists), senior captain MK Van Sant (seven points, five rebounds, two steals, two assists), juniors Remy Nolan (two points, four rebounds, one steal, one assist) and Sydney Houseworth (two rebounds), sophomore Nikki Bukovsky (10 points, two rebounds, one assist), and freshman Sophie de Bruijn (one point, one rebound).

The Lady Wreckers will now be entering the state tournament for the 27th consecutive season. An optimistic.

Brill said, "I am very proud that we have continued the tradition of making the state tournament 27 years in a row. I look forward to practicing hard this February break to prepare for what is ahead of us."