Fremd's girls basketball team rallied from 34-26 halftime deficit and an 8-point deficit with five minutes left to keep its season alive with a 48-45 win over No. 13 seeded Wheeling in the semifinal of the Class 4A Zion Benton regional.
The No. 4 Vikings (18-12) will face No. 5 Grayslake Central for the title on Thursday at 7 p.m.
The Vikings outscored Wheeling 15-6 in the final period.
"We played a great fourth quarter," said Fremd coach Dave Yates, whose team was led by Mid-Suburban West Player of the Year and sophomore Emily Klaczek (12 points, two 3-pointers), freshman Grace LaBarge (11 points) and Angie Zara (9 points). Ella Burns also had a 3-pointer fro Fremd. "Despite not having things go well for three quarters, we came alive and rally played energy."
Wheeling (14-14) was led by Nansy Velev (19 points, three 3-pointers) and Nosa Igiehon (9 points). Morgan Collar and Chloe Drozdz each chipped in 7 points.
"Credit Wheeling and coach (Matt) Weber," Yates added. "They had their way with us for most of the game. They shot the ball well the whole game.
"We were expecting a tough game. Wheeling has gone nose to nose with everyone in the East. Matt has done an amazing job with this team. We were very fortunate to play another game."
Grayslake Central 50, Barrington 45: Sophomores Taylor Thompson (10 points) and Shanna Turczynski (9 points, three 3-pointers) were top scorers for the No. 12-seeded Fillies (10-17) against the No. 5 Rams in the Class 4A semifinal at Zion-Benton.
"I thought Grayslake Central played real nice defense," said Barrington coach Babbi Barreiro. "Morgan Kelly and Shanna Turczynski came off the bench and gave us some real nice minutes.
"It's always tough to say goodbye to your seniors (Rachel Mori, Tess Conforti, Kaitlyn Henke and Morgan Kelly) and I will miss them. I was happy with our young kids stepping up this season and doing some nice things, so that's a good place to start in the off-season."
Rolling Meadows 62, St. Charles East 50: Rolling Meadows got its Class 4A postseason going with a 62-50 victory in regional semifinal play at Addison Trail.
Among the leading contributors for the Mustangs (20-8) were Lily Greifenstein (15 points, 4 assists, 3 rebounds), Bridget Rolla (12 points, 3 assists, 7 rebounds, 2 steals), Susannah Holifield (9 points, 5 rebounds) and Melissa Spiwak (7 points, 4 assists, 2 steals).
Alexa Davis contributed an exceptionally well-rounded performance with 14 points, 5 assists, 6 rebounds and 6 steals.
"We had good balance, and Alexa Davis was all over the floor," said Rolling Meadows coach Ryan Kirkorsky. "I was impressed by St. Charles East. They're a tough team who challenged us -- we had to withstand many of their runs."
The Mustangs, seeded sixth in the Lake Park sectional, will next face No. 3 seed Glenbard West in regional final play at 7 p.m. Thursday at Addison Trail.
Maine West 72, Niles North 13: The Central Suburban North champs (27-1) were unchallenged in their first postseason contest in the Class 4A Glenbrook South regional.
Sophomore Angela Dugalic (6 rebounds, 5 steals) led the way with 18 points. Junior Sarah Magnoni had 8 while Allison Pearson and Ellie Centella each had 7 as a total of 12 Warriors scored.
Maine West will meet the host Titans in regional final play at 7 p.m. Thursday.
Palatine 49, Highland Park 26: The Mid-Suburban West champions (22-7) rolled in their first postseason game against the Class 4A regional host Giants.
Next up for the third-seeded Pirates is a regional final at 7 p.m. Thursday against North Suburban Conference runner-up Stevenson (16-12), the No. 6 seed in the Fremd sectional. The Pirates edged Stevenson 32-28 in overtime on Jan. 27 in Palatine.
St. Viator 58, Lakeview 15: In Class 3A Wauconda regional semifinal play, the Lions rolled behind a defensive effort that allowed 8 points through the first three quarters.
Leading the scoring effort for St. Viator (19-9) were Myia Clark (15 points, 4 steals, 2 assists) and Olivia Isufi (9 points, 4 rebounds, 2 assists).
The Lions next meet regional host Wauconda at 7 p.m. Thursday.
Wheaton North 47, Conant 33: The 13th-seeded Cougars saw their season come to an end with a record of 10-18 against the fourth-seeded Falcons in a Class 4A regional semi in DeKalb. Wheaton North next meets Elk Grove in a regional final at 7 p.m. Thursday.
Geneva 62, Schaumburg 37: The defending state champion Vikings, seeded No. 1 in the Lake Park sectional, eliminated the No. 17 Saxons (5-23) in Class 4A Schaumburg regional play (in a game played at Conant).
Geneva will meet Batavia, a 65-62 winner against Bartlett, for the regional championship Thursday.