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Caledonia High School's Katie Tornstrom dribbles up the court during Saturday's Section 1AA semifinal game against Rochester Lourdes at the Mayo Civic Auditorium. Caledonia won 74-64.

ROCHESTER, Minn. — Katie Tornstrom waited four years to play in a MSHSL Section 1AA semifinal game and was going to do everything in her power to make sure the Caledonia High School girls basketball team would find a way to win it.

Tornstrom delivered to the tune of eight 3-pointers, including a stretch that saw her hit a triple on five consecutive possessions at one point in the first half en route to a game-high 35 points as the Warriors defeated Rochester Lourdes 74-64 for their 19th straight victory Saturday afternoon at the Mayo Civic Center.

The second-seeded Warriors (23-4) trailed third-seeded Lourdes (20-8) 9-5 early on, but that’s when the Tornstrom show began. The Minnesota State University-Moorhead recruit would go on to score the game’s next 21 points, starting with four free throws before she went on her memorable hot streak. She would make her next six 3-pointers, including the five possessions in a row, to turn a 9-5 deficit into a 24-9 lead.

“It’s like I’m floating on air when I’m shooting like that,” Tornstrom said. “I can just throw it up there and it will go in.”

Tornstrom finished with 25 first-half points on 7 of 14 shooting, including a 6-for-10 effort from beyond the arc, as the Warriors stretched their lead to as much as 22. In addition to Tornstrom’s offensive fireworks, the Warriors used solid defense to take control. Lourdes converted just 12 of 29 field-goal attempts in the first 18 minutes.

“We were just in the passing lanes and tried to force turnovers,” Tornstrom said. “We just tried to have them be uncomfortable and take bad shots. We were able to do that.”

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Rochester Lourdes refused to go down without a fight. It made eight 3-pointers, cutting the deficit to five points twice in the second half, but the Warriors had an answer, and more importantly, it wasn’t always Tornstrom. Kaitlin Conniff added 18 points while Heidi Bolduan finished with 13. Bolduan iced it when she made a putback, then was fouled after she grabbed an offensive rebound off a missed free throw. That put the Warriors up by nine points with 2 minutes left.

“That’s what we talked about all the time,” Sorenson said. “Katie is the focal point for a lot of teams. Others have to step up make some shots, play well defensively, and getting things done. We give them the confidence to shoot the ball when they have an open look. You saw Katie knock down a 3. Heidi hit one early in the game, and Ashley (Schroeder) getting to the rim. Those are the plays that make the team better. Everybody looks at Katie making 3s. That helps, but it’s the other girls chipping in their points. It’s a team game.”

Caledonia will play its Three Rivers Conference rival Winona Cotter in a Section 1AA championship game at 8 p.m. Thursday at the Mayo Civic Arena. It will be the third time the two teams have met. They split the previous two meetings.

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