THURSDAY GIRLS HOOPS REPORT
Last updated 2/7/2020 at 3:17pm
On Thursday, the Bolingbrook Raiders (20-6,6-1) traveled to Orland Park in search of win No. 20 for the season at Sandburg (17-10, 1-6). The Lady Raiders won the game 63-51.
The Southwest Suburban Blue victory pulled Bolingbrook to within one game of SWSC Blue leader, Homewood-Flossmoor (21-4, 7-0). The two SWSC Blue powers will clash for the conference title at Bolingbrook on Tuesday.
Bolingbrook coach Chris Smith experimented with some lineup changes tonight to get the Lady Raiders ready for the upcoming IHSA Class 4A Girls State Basketball Tournament.
Smith started with what will be the Lady Raiders' 2020-21 starting lineup next season.
Along with regular starter sophomore Kennedi Perkins; 6-foot junior Faith Domercant, 5-foot-10 junior Katelyn Hoekema, junior Makayla Ashford and the star of the game, 6-foot junior De'Ahna Richardson.
"I wanted to get my underclassman some time together on the court, starting a game," Smith said. "Last season
we were hit by all those injuries right before the tournament. I want my girls to have experience in game situationsin case we get hit with injuries again."
Led by six points and five rebounds by Domercant, the 2020-21 Lady Raiders played the host Eagles to a 11-11 deadlock after one quarter. Hoekema also hauled down five rebounds and converted on three of six free throws and added a third-quarter bucket for five points on the night.
"It was great to see us put things together and get the victory," Domercant said. "In the first quarter, I really wanted to help my team by coming out with a lot of energy."
Treasure Thompson, Danyel Middleton, Jayden Marable and Kyla Mattews, who are four out of the five regular starters for the Lady Raiders, were joined by senior Alesia Boyd to start the second quarter.
The fired-up Eagles played the state-ranked Lady Raiders almost even in the second quarter, trailing only 23-22 at the halftime break.
"In the state tournament, the possibility of getting one or two of your starters in first quarter foul trouble is expanded," Smith said. "I wanted to see how my starters would come in off the bench cold, like they would if they would have been in early foul trouble.
"They struggled in the second quarter having not been accustomed to playing in that situation. That is what I wanted them to experience tonight. Facing the adversity and learning how to handle that will benefit us in the state tournament."
The super-soph Perkins (nine points, two 3's) hit a three-point bomb to ignite the game-winning run with five minutes remaining in the third quarter and giving the Raiders a 30-27 lead.
The 6-foot junior Richardson took over the game.
Richardson scored eight of the 24 Lady Raider third quarter points and hauled down four rebounds, as "The Brook" opened up a 47-34 lead after three quarters.
"In the first quarter I had a real slow start," Richardson said. "In the third quarter, I knew I had to step it up and help my teammates. I'm really happy that I was able to have the big third quarter."
Perkins closed out the quarter to give the Raiders the 13-point third quarter lead, when she buried a three-poin, buzzer-beater from half-court.
Thompso, dominated the fourth quarter, as she scored 11 of her game-high 17 points and hauled down eight rebounds, including five on the offensive glass.
"I was so much taller than the Sandburg girls and I received numerous beautiful passes from my teammates,"
Thompson said. "In the second quarter, we did not have a lot of energy. Also that was a new situation for us coming off the bench. That's no excuse. We should have come out with more energy."
Middleton scored nine points in limited action tonight. Ashford, had two big buckets in the huge third quarter and sophomore Miranda Fry contributed with a third quarter hoop too. In limited action, senior Jayden Marable had two points.
"The whole point of tonight was that I wanted the girls to face adversity," Smith concluded."We haven't handled adversity well at times. Also Sandburg really played well tonight.
"We got the job done. De'Ahna Richardson had the big third quarter for us and now we're ready for H-F on Tuesday."
SOUTHWEST PRAIRIE EAST
Joliet West 68 Plainfield East 34
The Tigers (26-3, 14-1) won for the 21st consecutive time at Plainfield East (7-22, 2-13) on Thursday. The Tigers led 12-2 after one quarter. The Tigers exploded out to a 38-19 lead at the half and then put the game away in the third quarter.
The game was stopped after three quarters.
Up next for the Tigers is a Tuesday night visit for from the Joliet Central Steelwomen (25-4,13-2), for the Southwest Prairie East championship.
SOUTHWEST PRAIRIE EAST
Plainfield North 71 Minooka 58
The Tigers Lexi Hernandez put on a show at Plainfield North on Thursday night. All Hernandez did was bury seven three-pointers and score 30 points to lead the Tigers to the SPC West win.
Minooka (6-24, 2-13) led 14-11 after one quarter and trailed only by one point at the half. The Indians put up a valiant effort tying the game at 51 late in the fourth quarter.
Hernandez, would bury her sixth three-point bomb, for a 54-51 Tiger lead. Tiger senior, Katelyn Sparlin, would
bury her third three-pointer of the night, for a 59-54 Tiger lead. Marissa Mussatto, hit double-figures for the Tigers with 10 points.