Bolingbrook girls top Neuqua for sectional No. 9
Kristen Moore broke out in the second half of Thursday's Class 4A Oswego sectional championship game.
OSWEGO — Kristen Moore broke out in the second half of Thursday's Class 4A Oswego sectional championship game.
The Bolingbrook junior was merely mirroring the strong second half the Lady Raiders had as they claimed their ninth straight sectional title with a 56-38 win over Neuqua Valley.
Moore grabbed 10 of her 11 rebounds in the second half and scored all 14 of her points after halftime as she went 5-of-11 from the field.
"I got in foul trouble in the first half, but I didn't let it take me out of the game," "I tried to keep my head in the game because it was for the team. If my head was out of it then I would have let the whole team down, so I just said to myself, 'Put it aside, come back, play for the team and play to win,' and that's what I did."
The Raiders will attempt to do the same when they face Whitney Young at 7:30 p.m. at the Class 4A Hinsdale Central supersectional. The Dolphins topped Bolingbrook in four overtimes in the same game last season to earn a state berth.
"Tonight we started off a little shaky and I was like, Oh no," Bolingbrook coach Tony Smith said. "Hopefully we learn from that because Whitney Young, they go after you. They don't have any sympathy. They're not going to wait (if we start slow), so we're going to have to relax. That's going to be a big-time atmosphere. They got one from us last year, so we'd like to come back and do the same to them."
As for the Raiders (24-5), they had to fend of the Wildcats (27-4) after a sloppy first quarter for both teams saw Bolingbrook hold a slim 10-8 lead. Neuqua tied it early in the second and a 3-pointer by Myia Starks brought the Wildcats to within 14-13, but a Destiny Harris 3-pointer made it 17-13 and ignited an 11-0 Raider run. It was 26-18 at halftime.
Bolingbrook pushed the lead to 10 points on a couple of occasions in the third quarter and led 36-28 going into the fourth, where the Raiders went 6-of-16 from the field and 8-of-11 at the free throw line to salt away the win. Conversely, Neuqua was just 3-of-10 from the floor and 4-of-9 at the line in the fourth. For the night, the Wildcats were just 5-of-13 at the line.
Bolingbrook senior Kennedey Cattenhead scored 14 of her game-high 21 in the first half. Amarah Coleman scored nine and Harris added six for the Raiders.
After graduating eight Division I seniors from last year's team, this group of Raiders had to grow into sectional champions.
"This just shows these kids work hard," Smith said. "They worked hard to get better, so that's good to see, kids coming up and doing work. This is different because this is work. Before, we had some talent and it was a given. These kids here stepped up and are getting better and are becoming all-area and all-state kids right before our eyes."
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