High school basketball has started! Many girls teams got to work this week with official games while many more took part in their “preseason scrimmages.” Either way, games were played, moments were made and Bounce is ready to start his weekly journey with you.
Check back every Sunday for a column from yours truly talking about some of the impact moments and players of the week. This week, with a partial schedule, there isn’t as much meat as future weeks but we are still excited to be talking about actual live basketball.
• You’ll never believe this: Carroll won a basketball game while utilizing about every player in the scoring column. Yes, that is some sarcasm. If you’ve ever watched a coach Mark Redding team, you know that you can never get comfortable whether he’s using his hockey style line change or not.
On Saturday, the Chargers opened their season with a 62-38 win over defending co-NE8 champion Columbia City. 11 different Chargers put up points, led by 12 from Taylor Fordyce. It is crazy that, this early in the season, Carroll can get contributions from this many players against a quality opponent…but not all together surprising.
There is a school of thoughts that the Chargers could really challenge to win the SAC this season. Saturday was a great step in the right direction for that. They are also starting off with confidence out of that win and Homestead‘s game opening loss to Carmel.
• Speaking of depth, Northrop unsurprisingly also has it. After some struggles last season, Amanda Thatcher took control early of the Bruins’ season opening game on Saturday, a 61-31 win over Leo. Thatcher was a major pace setter in the first half as Northrop established their lead and ended up with a game high 16 points.
Behind her, the Bruins saw three more reliable scorers too. TiAuna White (14 points, 10 rebounds) and J’Asia Scott (11 points) are no brainers. We know they are going to do these things night in and night out. Aniyah Moore added eight points and five rebounds, stepping up nicely. That kind of depth is important, as it always has been, for Northrop. A big win quickly establishes them under first year head coach Kevin Clopton and Thatcher’s breakout immediately makes the Bruins more intriguing going forward.
Ok, ok. So Oak Hill isn’t as strong as they’ve been in the past. But C’mon…Norwell put up 81 points on them during Wednesday’s season opener. 81 points. Without a starting point guard. With a senior leading scorer back a game or two before projected to be. That had to be a real bummer for teams to see if they have Norwell on their schedule this season.
To come out on opening night, bury 10 three pointers, have four double digit scorers and be led in scoring by Maiah Shelton‘s 17 (coming off an injury) and Kennedy Fuelling‘s 16 (she’s a freshman who was playing in her first high school game)…let’s just say it surprised even me. Norwell is legit.
Sadly, due to COVID ‘concerns’ we didn’t get to see what would have been a fun Saturday game with Warsaw, but it does give the Knights time to get healthier, get Lauren Bales more practice time in and to get ready for their next game AND a hopefully rescheduled dance with the Tigers.
• Maybe, just maybe, East Noble is who we thought they were. Despite a close, tough loss to Goshen on Saturday night, the Knights kicked off the Shawn Kimmel coaching era well. Saturday was still a very solid effort for the Knights, led by Avan Beiswanger‘s 23 points and six three pointers in a 39-36 loss to Goshen, but they certainly plowed by a rebuilding Westview on Thursday.
Beiswanger, Carly Turner and Kylie Garton all scored in double digits on Thursday, led by Beiswanger’s 14. Karly Kirkpatrick did what Karly Kirkpatrick does: a bit of everything with nine steals, five rebounds and three assists. Those four alone totaled 15 steals in the win over Westview that began with a 9-0 run for the Knights. East Noble’s continued ability to spread things around like this is golden and it sets up perhaps the most intriguing game of the coming week: a county rivalry game with Central Noble in Albion.
You’ll find how just how good the Cougars are if you keep reading this column and position for position, East Noble and Central Noble match up so well.
• Heritage girls basketball coach Nicole Sisson was one of many area coaches picking up their first career win this week. On Tuesday Sisson led Heritage in beating DeKalb in a great comeback performance. The Barons used a big third quarter to really be in control of the game, but the Patriots bounced back for the 31-30 win.
Any time a coach can get their first win, it is noteworthy. To do it on their first night as a varsity coach takes a big weight off their shoulders. Congrats to coach Sisson and Heritage (led by Claire Bickel‘s seven points in a balanced scoring effort).
• Tuesday’s opening night also featured Woodlan out to prove their weren’t a one year team. The defending ACAC champions dispatched a much better than they have been New Haven team in a game that was a bit sloppy early. But it was opening night after all. The big question remains, is Woodlan a more complete team than they were last season?
That argument was made to Bounce this week. Time will tell because they really had to test themselves in week one against that New Haven team and again against Garrett on Thursday. On Tuesday, Woodlan was able to keep New Haven without a made field goal in the first quarter and got a balanced offensive effort of their own from Dakotah Krohn (15 points), Alicia McMahan (14) and Avah Smith (11).
Thursday’s narrow loss to Garrett made even more of a point for the Warriors. It was a game that, while Bounce picked correctly, was so much closer than many imagined. The Warriors limited Garrett post Morgan Ostrowski to zero points and it plays to the quality that Smith and freshman Taylor Knuebuhler have inside.
• Here is a jolting wake up call for an already deep NECC: this Churubusco team is going to push and push and push. As a team, they shot 43 percent from the field including 54.5 percent from three point range in a season opener against Lakewood Park. Just a quick reminder that David Goodwell basketball is going to be all about a running, “three and D” mentality.
Mariah Hosted has these games – and she has in past seasons – where she just puts on a show. Thursday was no exception to that. She hit all four of her triples, was 10 of 15 from the field and scored 24 points to go with six rebounds and six steals. As a team, Busco was all about that defense, picking up 19 steals on the game with Madison Hosted and Brelle Shearer each adding four in the 59-46 win.
Plenty to be happy about out of this game too if you are a Lakewood Park fan. Chloe Jolloff matched Hosted’s 24 points and she was helped out by Kenzie Shepherd‘s 10 points. Jolloff now sits at 915 points in her career, with 1,000 clearly in sight. Lakewood Park Jade Carnahan broke the program’s single game record for blocks with eight; she tallied all of those in the first half.
• Garrett is another team we didn’t get to see play their full slate of games this week due to Bellmont’s contact tracing quarantine that has the Squaws out of action. It did allow the Railroaders to chew on a closer than expected 45-39 win over Woodlan on Thursday.
While Bailey Kelham put up 20 points, basically as expected at this point, Taylor Gerke‘s inclusion showed its worth quickly. In her first game with Garrett, she scored 12 point and had five steals, consistently getting to the free throw line along the way. A big impact for Garrett in their lone opening week game was being able to have depth in scoring. Both Abby Weaver and Sadie Best were able to add baskets; coach Bob Lapadot said in the preseason he had been preaching to the pair about taking advantage of scoring opportunities.
How will that depth expand? Well Garrett got scoring from five players in the win over Woodlan and you can’t expect Morgan Ostrowski (11 rebounds) to stay scoreless probably ever again. Need a seventh scorer? Lapadot informed Outside the Huddle that Faith Owen, who started for the past two seasons, has rejoined the team after initially not planning to play. Owen, a strong shooting guard, is expected in the lineup on November 17 against North Side.
• When you talk about opening week statement wins, whatever they are worth, Central Noble pushing by Bishop Luers is up there.
The Cougars invited the Knights in and after a long, triple overtime, JV game, the varsity Cougars picked up a 49-44 win. After only scoring four points in the second quarter, Central Noble’s second half saw 19 and 15 point quarters led by Lydia Andrews‘ 10 points (she scored 15 in the game). The Cougars hit 17 of 30 free throws across the game, including Andrews’ 9 of 11 shooting from the free throw stripe. Madi Vice added 13 points and Bridgette Gray scored nine in the win.
As you should have read above, this sets up a great battle with East Noble later this week.
• Lakeland was the most active team this week, going 2-1 out of the gate and putting up a bunch of points in the process. The Lakers are scoring 53.3 per game with wins over DeKalb and Lake Central before losing their second game of the day Saturday to Hammond Noll at the Lake Central Classic. You can’t blame new coach Dale Gearheart for getting games in while he can.
In beating DeKalb on Thursday, it was surprisingly not Bailey Hartsough who led the way. Faith Riehl scored a game high 23 points and had nine rebounds in the win while Hartsough wasn’t far behind with her 22 point, eight rebound effort.
On Saturday, Hartsough had 17 points and Riehl 13 in a win over Lake Central but it was Hartsough’s second game that was a big one. Though losing to Hammond Noll, Hartsough scored 32 points and had 12 rebounds while also chipping in three assists, two steals and two blocks. Hartsough now has 1,223 career points which is 32 away from Jeff King (class of 1978) for fourth most in school history, regardless of gender.
Is Kayla Williams of New Haven going to be the first to get a triple double this year? She put up 11 points, 8 rebounds, 6 blocks and 4 steals in Tuesday’s season opening loss….Going back to last season’s Regional loss, Homestead has now lost back to back games by over 25 points for the first time since 2000….Blackhawk Christian is 2-0 to start their season including a win at West Noble on Saturday. It is the Braves first 2-0 start since 2015….Adams Central beat Eastside on Saturday without McKenna Dietsch in the lineup. It is just the 2nd opening game win for AC in the past 10 seasons and their first win over Eastside since 2013….Chanteese Craig and Annaka Nelson each scored 26 points in Saturday’s Concordia Lutheran win over New Haven.
Be sure to vote in this week’s FAN CHOICE for Performance of the Week. Keep in mind with basketball, this isn’t a player of the week poll. We aren’t taking into consideration every single game on a player’s weekly resume. Instead, these are the best singular games of the week.
Vote now for the Girls hoops FAN CHOICE Performance of the Week for the week of November 2.
These opinions represent those of Bounce and Outside the Huddle. No opinions expressed on Outside the Huddle represent those of any of our advertisers. Follow Bounce on Twitter at Bounce_OTH
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