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Girls Basketball: Naperville North knocks out Lemont

Updated: February 19, 2014 10:48PM



Morganne Freeman didn’t need an inspirational speech at halftime. She just needed the ball.

Freeman scored all 12 of her points in the second half, including eight during a 14-3 third-quarter run and two free throws with 17 seconds remaining, as Naperville North defeated Lemont 51-42 in the Class 4A Aurora East Regional Wednesday.

Naperville North (18-10) will play Benet (20-9) for the regional championship at 7 p.m. Friday.

Lemont (14-14), which started two freshmen and two sophomores, rallied from an early 9-2 hole to lead 25-22 at halftime. But the second half belonged to Freeman and the Huskies, who built a 41-32 lead seconds into the fourth quarter.

“Coach (Jason Lycus) told us all to come out on our game, on fire, with fire in our bellies,” Freeman said. “He wanted us to play a little more team basketball. We were kind of playing as individuals in that first half. My teammates got me the ball and I was able to finish.

“There was nothing special I did,” she added. “I think it was just team basketball.”

Lemont was able to close to within 43-38 with 4:50 remaining in the game on a basket by sophomore Maddy Vermejan, but Freeman and Kayla Sharples (30 points) scored back-to-back baskets and Laurel Pereira added two free throws.

Freshman Ali Kramer led Lemont with 12 points, and Kim Jerantowski and freshman Shannon O’Donnell each had eight.

“We made a string of bad decisions in the third quarter and they made sure that No. 25 (Sharples) had the ball in her hands,” Lemont coach Bill Bozue said. “I think she missed one free throw for the night. I don’t know how many she had, but they didn’t miss many as a team, one or two.

“I think defensively we played pretty well for the most part,” he added. “I thought we were strong on the boards overall. We were just kind of scrappy. We picked up some loose balls here and there and forced some things to happen. It was a gritty performance by the kids. They played well.”



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