For the first time in six years, the Fall Creek girls basketball team is headed to the big stage.
The Crickets upended top-seeded Phillips 63-53 on Saturday in Phillips to punch their ticket to the Division 4 state tournament.
Mackensy Kolpien scored 19 points to lead Fall Creek, and Emily Madden added 17. Gianna Vollrath chipped in with 14 of her own.
The second-seeded Crickets had to overcome a three-point halftime deficit on Saturday. They surged into the break on an 8-0 run to trim what had been an 11-point lead.
Fall Creek pulled ahead in the second half, where it outscored Phillips 39-26.
The Crickets' lead was beginning to dwindle late in the second half, with the Loggers closing to within six. But Fall Creek closed on an 8-4 run to ice away the sectional title.
The Crickets had to overcome 29 points from Phillips' Jada Eggebrecht.
It's the first trip to state since 2015 for Fall Creek and 12th overall. The Crickets will learn their opponent for Friday's state semifinals when the field is re-seeded on Sunday. Both the semis and state championship will be played at the La Crosse Center.
The semifinals take place at 9:05 a.m. and 12:25 p.m. The championship is slated for Friday night at 6 p.m. All state tournament games will be broadcast on ABC.