Downers Grove North center Peyton Winters apologized for using the word "excited" in too many of her comments following Thursday's game at West Chicago.
But you couldn't blame the 6-foot-2 Winters and her teammates for being excited that the new season is here and that the Trojans opened their new campaign in impressive fashion in a 67-28 defeat of the Wildcats (0-2).
Winters had 16 points, 12 rebounds and blocked 5 shots as Downers Grove North controlled from the opening tip, jumping ahead 19-6 after one quarter and leading 35-18 at the half.
"I think we were definitely really excited about this season," Winters said. "We have really good team chemistry, and coming out of last year we have pretty much the same group, so we're really excited about this season."
And with good reason. Not only was Winters too tough for the Wildcats to handle on either side of the floor, but 6-1 Trojans forward Jaida Travascio-Green was lethal all over the floor and senior guard Sarah Costello also came up big on Thursday.
"Peyton's worked really, really hard all summer, spring and fall to be more of an inside presence for us," said Trojans coach Stephan Bolt, who was a little excited himself after the win. "Peyton's got some size and Jaida has tremendous length an athleticism on the perimeter. She's taken her game to another level, and Sarah's done the same."
Travascio-Green had a game-high 20 points, added 4 blocks and 4 steals, and Costello knocked down a pair of 3-pointers on her way to a 12-point, 11-rebound night for the Trojans.
"Between me, Jaida and Sarah we have some size and physicality," Winters said. "We've got the 'DGN Block Party' going, and I'm real excited. Sorry, I keep saying excited."
West Chicago, meanwhile, had dropped its season opener to Nazareth on Tuesday and then ran into a tough, tall Trojans team on Thursday. Downers North had big advantages in rebounds (40-26) and free throws made (20-4) while defeating the hosts.
"They presented some challenges for us and we're kind of a work in progress," West Chicago coach Kim Wallner said. "Some of their size got to us and we changed some shots and we were hesitant at times."
Amari Stafford paced the Wildcats with 7 points off the bench, while Shelly Molskow added 6 points and Mae Elizabeth Gimre added 6 rebounds.