By Drake Skleba
For the Enterprise 

Kendall Holmes, Lindsey Rogers and the Redwing Depth Squad take down mighty Chicago Simeon

Maine South, Niamh Gardiner, trounce Warren


Last updated 1/10/2020 at 1:01am

After watching Chicago Simeon (16-2) totally dismantle Fenwick, 73-55, at Benet Academy's Chicagoland Invitational on Saturday, Benet Academy coach Joe Kilbride walked away a bit concerned.

Hours before Wednesday's nonconference showdown with Simeon in Lisle, Kilbride was told his Redwings would take on Morrow and the Wolverines without Wisconsin-bound Brooke Schramek. Nursing a sore knee, the Benet Academy training staff suggested that she sit this game out.

For almost any other girls hoops team in Illinois, this would be a major problem - not for Benet Academy.

Led by DePaul-bound all-stater, Kendall Holmes (15 points four rebounds, two assists, two steals) and 6-foot-1 senior Lindsey Rogers and her "Redwing Depth Squad", Benet prevailed 51-48. Morrow scored 22 points, hauled down 12 rebounds and blocked six shots to lead the Wolverines.

With 2:48 remaining in a game that had an IHSA Class 4A Supersectional feel to it, Simeon's 6-foot-2 Kamiah Gardner (10 points, six rebounds) scored to give the Wolverines a 44-43 lead.

Rogers (seven points,seven rebounds, three blocks, two assists), a key member of the depth squad calmly buried a 23-foot three-point bomb to regain the lead for the Redwings at 46-44.

Morrow attacked the basket but ran into a brick wall that was Rogers.

Rogers grabbed the rebound and fed Redwing senior point-guard Ashley Berry (four points, four rebounds, three assists), who hit the always-steady junior Kendall Moriarty (four points, four rebounds, two assists, two steals) for a lay-up and a 48-44 Redwing lead with 2:06 left.

"It was amazing to knock down the big three-pointer, late in the game for us," Rogers said. "I love taking that shot and I was so happy to see it go in. Simeon is the most physical team I have ever played against. I really locked down on Morrow, who is a great player, there. Kendall Holmes is the most-talented player I have ever played with. I was not surprised, as she always does, to come through for us at the end."

Morrow scored with 41 seconds left to pull the Wolverines within 48-46. Breaking the Wolverines' strangling-pressure defense, Berry found a wide-open Holmes, who hit a pull-up jumper with 20 seconds left for a 50-46 Benet lead. Morrow answered with two free throws to pull Simeon within 50-48 with 10.6 seconds left.

Holmes was fouled and knocked down the front end of a one-and one, miss the second shot and a barrage of Wolverine desperation shots misfired. The Schramek-less, Enterprise Publications No.1-ranked, Benet Academy prevailed.

Six-foot-2 sophomore Megan Demos (four points, seven rebounds) stepped up big time for the Redwings.

"We had a number of girls step up for us in Brooke's absence," Kilbride said. "Morgan (Demos) was one of those girls."

The Simeon twin towers of Morrow and Gardner scored 19 of the 26 first-half points for the Wolverines, who took a 26-23 halftime lead.

Freshman Lenee Beaumont and junior sharp-shooter Molly Sheehan hit long-range threes to keep Benet close in the first half.

Beaumont's three with 4:16 in the half gave the Redwings an 18-17 lead. Sheehan's three-point bomb pulled Benet within 26-23 in the last minute of the first half.

In the third quarter, senior Lexi Moriarty buried a three to open up a 32-28 Benet lead with 4:23 left in the third quarter. Sheehan (six points) struck again at the end of the quarter to give Benet a 35-32 lead. After three quarters, the two teams were deadlocked at 35.

"It was great for us to win tonight. Once again it showed how deep we are as a team," Berry said. "Everyone contributed and we showed that even though one of our best players went down, that we are fighters and we will never give up."

"Without Brooke, we knew everyone had to step up tonight," Holmes said. "Simeon is a very good, very athletic team and we received contributions from everyone. As always, no one has the tremendous depth that we have. We wear teams down with wave upon wave of good solid defensive players. The teams we defeat can't handle it.

"For me, I was able to hit my shots tonight. Our offense, as it always does, allows us to get good looks at the basket."

"Without Brooke, we challenged the girls to step up and they all did," Kilbride added."The Morrow girl is a great player and I felt the girls all controlled her tonight. Kendall Moriarty did a real good on her. Lindsey Rogers is a great shooter and she played outstanding for us tonight. As I have said all season, our amazing depth, is our greatest strength."

Maine South 58 Warren 28

Led by the Gardiner sisters, the Enterprise Newspapers' No.3-ranked Hawks, crushed Warren on Wednesday night in Park Ridge. Niamh Gardiner had a game-high 20 points to lead the Hawks (12-5). Nicole added seven points.

Maine South jumped out to a 18-4 lead after one quarter. Warren (6-11) played the Hawks even in the second quarter for a 31-17 Hawk halftime lead. The Hawks blew open the game in the third quarter to lead 50-25.

Emily Pape and Niki Manolis chipped in with five points each for the Hawks. On Friday night in Park Ridge, Maine South (12-5, 3-2) will host Glenbrook South (6-10,1-3) in a Central Suburban South battle at 7:30


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