Girls Basketball: Marian Catholic wears out Joliet Catholic
By Tim O’Brien For Sun-Times Media January 8, 2013 9:46PM
Updated: February 10, 2013 5:55PM
With a 15-1 record heading into Tuesday’s action, Marian Catholic clearly is doing something right.
Still, even midway through the season there remain things to work out.
What was on the docket for the Spartans on Tuesday night against visiting Joliet Catholic? Honing that killer instinct.
Holding a seven-point advantage heading into the fourth, Marian used a 12-2 run to blow open a close game in scoring a 56-44 win in Chicago Heights.
“Coach (Annie) Byrne told us to keep it up and pick up the intensity because it had been kind of low,” Marian’s Ashton Millender said. “We came out to win the game. We have to show that killer instinct.”
Millender (9 rebounds, 4 assists) and Teniya Page (7 assists) scored 16 points apiece for No. 1 Marian Catholic (16-1, 5-0) in the East Suburban Catholic battle. Jerrell Matthews added 11 points off the bench for the Spartans.
On a night when the offense struggled from the field, things finally fell into place in the fourth for the Spartans. Page found a wide-open Megan Walsh behind the Joliet Catholic defense for an easy bucket to kick things off.
Millender followed with putback and added another bucket inside on a zip pass from Page.
The run was on, and the host Spartans never looked back. Millender didn’t pause when explaining what turned the tide.
“Our defense, especially our man-to-man,” Millender said. “Our defense leads into our offense. When that gets going, everything does.”
Joliet Catholic (14-2, 4-1) finished 14-of-38 from the floor. Nicole Ekhomu had 15 points for the Angels, all in the first half. Jasmine Lumpkin, the team’s season scoring leader (17.4 points per game), was held to six points before fouling out late in the fourth.
Trevonya McClain (8 points) and Mary Susan Rouse (7) also contributed for Joliet Catholic.
“Mentally, we didn’t have an answer when we needed one,” Joliet Catholic coach Ed Schodrof said. “They got the key rebounds and some weakside layups that were huge. We had that scoring drought, and that combination was our demise.”