In the always tough Mid-Suburban West, winning even back-to-back girls basketball titles is quite an achievement.
Five in a row is nothing short of spectacular.
That's what Fremd accomplished Tuesday night, clinching its fifth consecutive division championship with a 64-38 victory over visiting Barrington.
The Vikings (21-3, 9-0) played a nearly flawless opening two quarters in handing the Fillies only their second West loss of the season -- both of which came against Fremd.
"We wanted to win so badly to keep the tradition going," said Vikings junior guard Haley Gorecki. "It's an honor to say I've been part of a championship team all three years I've been here, and of course five overall."
Gorecki was nearly unstoppable, scoring 20 of her game-high 31 points before halftime.
"Haley is a special player, as we all know," said Barrington coach Babbi Barreiro, "but tonight she was just unbelievable."
Gorecki went off for 13 points in the first quarter, and 6-2 sophomore teammate Bryana Hopkins had 3 steals in the period as Fremd bolted to a 20-4 lead.
The Vikings forced 12 Barrington turnovers in the first eight minutes.
"We didn't do what we set out to do at the beginning of the game," said Barreiro.
Fremd wasn't about to let up in the second quarter as sophomore guard Brianna Lewis scored 8 of her 13 points to stake the Vikings to a 26-point halftime lead.
"We played tonight like we're capable of playing," said Fremd coach Dave Yates. "I think that's as good a first half as I've seen all year. We did what we wanted to defensively -- and offensively, we were finishing."
Barrington (18-6, 7-2) was much better in the second half, playing to a dead-even tie on the scoreboard and showing more intensity.
Fillies senior Angie Kirchoff was outstanding with a team-high 16 points while classmate Aoife Callanan came off the bench to score 12, including a couple of 3-pointers.
"Angie got after it hard," said Barreiro, "and Aoife did some nice things offensively. But you can't start the way we did and expect to win."
Barrington sophomore forward Megan Talbot pitched in with 4 points, 5 rebounds and 4 blocked shots, while Hopkins added 7 points for the Vikings.
"I think you'd have to go back into the annals to find the last time a team won this division five years in a row," said Yates. "That just shows our consistency and how these kids take care of business."
"A couple of coaches told me the other day that's it not easy being the hunted, and that's what we are now. We're always getting every team's best shot."
Fremd freshman Grace Tworek scored 4 points with 3 steals and 2 blocked shots, while Erin Lenahan contributed 3 points and some tough defense.
"We're a young team," said Gorecki, "but we're confident. We play well together and we're close friends off the court as well, and that helps a lot."