2017-'18 Season Coverage
updated: 1/12/2017 10:10 PM

Naperville Central junior reaches 1,000

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  • Mia Lakstigala

    Mia Lakstigala

By Matt Le Cren
Daily Herald Correspondent

Naperville Central was prepared to celebrate Mia Lakstigala reaching a milestone Thursday night.

The Redhawks ended up celebrating two, plus a big victory over cross-town rival Naperville North.

Lakstigala went over the 1,000-point mark for the Redhawks varsity when she drained a 3-pointer with 4:20 remaining in the second quarter.

Play was stopped for an announcement, then Lakstigala resumed filling up the basket. The junior guard finished with a personal-high 33 points to lead the Redhawks to a 74-48 DuPage Valley Conference win.

"I'm really happy about it," Lakstigala said. "I'm glad to get it against North, our rival, so that was awesome."

Lakstigala is the 11th player in program history to score 1,000 and only the third to reach it during her junior season. Candace Parker, the school's all-time scoring leader with 2,753 points, and Erica Carter, who is second on the list with 1,664, are the others.

"That's pretty good company," Naperville Central coach Andy Nussbaum said. "To reach that as a junior is pretty remarkable.

"She played like she earned it, too."

Nussbaum informed Lakstigala on Wednesday that she was 12 points away from the mark. She began the game by taking a pass from Maiah DeShazer and swishing a 3 from the top of the key.

"I was trying not to worry about it because I didn't want to just be thinking about that," Lakstigala said. "I moved the ball around and when I got to (1,000) it was pretty cool to see everyone cheering."

Lakstigala was aggressive throughout, slashing to the basket for contested layups. She shot 14 of 20 but also had 6 rebounds, 4 assists and 2 steals.

"I was trying to score points but also look for my teammates," Lakstigala said. "They looked for me as well."

Indeed, DeShazer had 5 assists, all on Lakstigala baskets, while Erin Moran dished 3 assists to go with 11 points and 5 steals. Lucy Schmid added 9 points for the Redhawks (16-6, 7-1), who didn't pull away until late.

Naperville North (7-8, 2-5) hung around thanks to the play of 6-foot-4 junior center Sadie Jurkovic, who had a season-high 17 points and 13 rebounds.

Jurkovic's putback pulled the Huskies with 41-32 in the third quarter, but Lakstigala answered with a jumper to trigger a 22-6 run, during which she tallied 15 points.

"I've watched them a lot," Naperville North coach Jason Dycus said. "I know Mia and have seen her play for three years now and in my opinion she may be the player of the year in the conference. She's really good.

"We made an adjustment in the second half to try to take her away and face guarded her. When (Jurkovic) went up on the baseline and Lakstigala made it over her I'm like, 'Are you kidding me?'"

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