Updated: April 6, 2014 6:17AM
1. Spartans adapted well. It was more or less a bombshell not long after Marian Catholic won the Class 4A state title that season when Annie Byrne stepped down as coach. Former Lisle and Immaculate Conception coach Dan Murray stepped in with a different coaching style and personality. There were a few bumps in the road, but in Monday’s supersectional win over Edwardsville, the Spartans looked as though they had played for Murray for four years.
2. The GCAC missed out. OK, not really. DePaul-bound Lauren Prochaska, of Trinity, was a mega-talent and represents the conference well. But Mother McAuley’s Elizabeth Nye left an indelible handprint on the 2013-14 GCAC season by leading the Mighty Macs to the conference tournament crown. Nye finished the season averaging 17.3 points and 6.4 assists per game.
3. Playoffs played well. The “emphasis” by officials on calling hand-checking and blocking by defenders in the paint that brought early-season games to a standstill was almost nonexistent in the state playoffs. It resulted in some physical, but classic, battles during which the stars didn’t have to spend an inordinate time on the bench. State finals weekend should be interesting.