Burlington Central notches another conference win

 
By Dave Hess
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 12/7/2016 10:41 PM

Shooting 33 percent from the field, committing 18 turnovers and scoring only 32 points, Burlington Central will have better offensive efforts.

It was stifling defense that propelled the Rockets to a 32-19 Kishwaukee River Conference girls basketball win over host Woodstock Wednesday night.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

The win was the 53rd straight conference victory for the Rockets.

In the first half, Woodstock only converted 2-of-15 shots from the field for 13 percent in scoring 4 points during the first 16 minutes.

With freshman Kathryn Schmidt scoring 10 points including a pair of 3-pointers, Central, which scored the last 13 points of the half, held a 20-4 advantage at intermission.

"We did a great job of putting pressure on them," said Burlington Central coach Mark Smith. "We didn't let them get a lot of good looks or good shots. I like the way we blocked the passing lanes."

The host Blue Streaks made a run at the Rockets (5-1, 2-0) to start the second half by scoring the first 9 points of the third quarter.

A putback by Emma Brand pulled Woodstock within 20-13 with 4:37 left in the quarter.

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The Rockets broke the scoring drought after Schmidt nailed a trey with 1:28 left to make the score 23-13.

Central's biggest lead of the game was 17, 31-14, after a putback by Mackenzie West with 2:18 remaining in the contest.

Schmidt, who connected on 3-of-6 from 3-point range and was a perfect 6-of-6 from the free throw line, paced the Rockets with 17 points.

"It is a big jump from eighth grade basketball to varsity basketball," said Schmidt. "It is a much faster game. I am still getting used to playing at this level. I am working hard in practice on my shooting and trying to get better every game. The older players have accepted me and helped me adjust to playing varsity basketball."

Smith likes the way Schmidt has improved every game.

"Opponents are throwing a lot of different and creative defenses and a lot of box-and-ones at Kathryn," said Smith. "She is handling those challenges very well."

With no returning starters and only senior Madelynne Drescher with minimal varsity experience, Smith realizes he has to have patience with his young and inexperienced team.

                                                                                                                                                                                                                       
 

'We want to be a better team from the beginning of the season to the end of the season," he said. "This is a very coachable group. I like the way we have improved every game."

West backed Schmidt with 6 points to go along with 9 rebounds for the winners.

Camryn Tafoya led the Blue Streaks with 5 points including a 3-pointer.

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