Glenbard South knew going into Monday's girls basketball contest against Hinsdale Central that it would need four quarters of intensity against the Red Devils.
The Raiders got it.
Two free throws by junior Sarah Cohen with 28.7 seconds remaining in the game gave Glenbard South a 38-36 lead, and the Raiders held on to win 38-37 during the opening day of the Bill Neibch Falcon Classic at Wheaton North. Hinsdale Central is the tournament's No. 2 seed.
"I'm proud of how the kids came through after a couple of days off. Hinsdale Central is a good team," said Raiders coach Morgan Kasperek whose team improved to 8-3.
She said the key to Glenbard South prevailing was playing its game, which means controlling the pace.
"We want to stop them on offense and force them to play a lot of defense," she said.
The Raiders led the Red Devils (7-5) 32-28 after the third quarter. The baskets on either side of the court were untouched for the first 3:58 of the final quarter until Cohen drove through the lane untouched to put her team up 34-28. A minute later, Hinsdale Central responded with a 3-point basket from Paige Bareck followed a minute later by Bareck's steal and layup to bring her team to within 1 point.
The Raiders' Ashley Dodge hit net to put Glenbard South back up by 3, and Kasperek called a timeout with 54.7 seconds left.
A Raiders' turnover eventually turned into a 3-pointer by senior Grace Hartzman, who scored a game-high 18 points, and the game was tied at 36.
Eventually Cohen made her free throws that gave Glenbard South the advantage for good. However, it wasn't over until the absolutely very end. Glenbard South was called for a foul with no time left on the clock. But the Red Devils made just one of the two free throws.
The Raiders were led by sophomore Maggie Bair with 13 points and 8 rebounds. Cohen finished with 12 points.
"I think our defense was the key. Coach K stresses defense, and lately we had not played well defensively the last couple of games," Bair said.
Glenbard South shot 55 percent from the field to lead 16-11 after the first quarter. Hinsdale Central led 23-20 at halftime.
Red Devils coach Tom McKenna was pleased that his team had a chance to win the game at the end and how it got to that point. But he reiterated what Kasperek said, that the Raiders prevailed because they controlled the pace.
"Glenbard South did a great job of making the game go at their pace. We like up-tempo," he said.
The tournament continues Tuesday. Hinsdale Central takes on Jacobs at 9 a.m. Glenbard South will battle host Wheaton North at 4:30 p.m.