Looking to "tidy things up" these next two weeks before the playoffs, Wheaton Warrenville South has some extra opportunities with makeup games sprinkled into the schedule.
But in Monday night's 65-31 victory at Glenbard North, the Tigers (20-3, 7-1) looked plenty sharp, executing well on offense, dominating the boards and playing stingy defense. Wheaton Warrenville South led just 8-6 midway through the first quarter but used a 12-2 run to close out the opening quarter and never looked back in this DuPage Valley Conference contest that was made up after being postponed last month due to inclement weather.
"We just wanted to come out strong and make sure we did everything we needed to do to win the game," said Melinda Franke, who pulled in 8 rebounds. "We did come out strong in the first half. We have a big focus on rebounding and all five of us love to rebound."
Tigers coach Rob Kroehnke loved what he saw from his team, especially in the first 16 minutes as the visitors took a 35-13 lead on the Panthers.
"When we looked at our numbers (at the half) we were 50 percent shooting, with 3 turnovers, 20 rebounds and 3 fouls," said Kroehnke, whose squad began a stretch of six games in nine days on Monday with the hopes of tidying things up prior to the postseason. "It was just exactly what we talk about. I thought we did a fantastic job tonight."
Meghan Waldron was her usual stellar self, leading all scorers with 21 points in less than three quarters of play. But as a team, the Tigers owned the glass and defended well while building a 56-18 lead after three quarters over a Glenbard North (6-15, 1-8) team playing without Laila Pickens, who suffered a season-ending injury two weeks ago.
"We know that every game is important from here on out and you've just got to come ready to play every game, stay focused and do our best," said Wheaton Warrenville South's Maggie Dansdill, who had 6 points and 7 rebounds. "Everyone was doing great rebounding. We're starting to click really well and it should be fun."
Glenbard North coach John Chamberlain was impressed with the Tigers relentless play on the glass, but he also left with great things to say about Waldron, who opened the game's scoring with a 15-footer on her way to 8 points in the opening quarter.
"They're good. Waldron's not only good she's in their head," he said. "She can get by you, she can stop and pop and tonight's she's out there hitting 3s. She's just flat out good and makes everyone else around her better. There's a reason she's going D-I."
Sarah Petztold paced the Panthers with 8 points, while Zakiya Newsome and Arianna Callard and Lisa Lubben each knocked down 3-pointers.