Dundee-Crown cruises by Larkin
After a ragged sequence just before halftime, Dundee-Crown refocused on their defense at halftime. Then the Chargers went out and blew past Larkin, 55-31, and into the finals of the Class 4A South Elgin girls basketball regional.
The Chargers (18-9) kept alive their goal of winning their fourth straight regional thanks to 17 points by Katelyn Skibinski and 14 from freshman Gianine Boado.
The Chargers looked to be in absolute control after scoring 23 straight points in a run spanning the first and second quarters. They used a smothering defense to create easy transition baskets. But the Royals weren't about to go away, closing the half on an 11-2 run to get within 10 points, 25-15, at halftime. Brianna Young scored 6 of her 14 points during the spurt.
Halftime gave D-C a chance to get reorganized and re-energized.
"We just talked about defense," said Chargers coach Sarah Miller. "We're known for our defense, it drives our offense, so I felt like we weren't playing the team defense that we play."
"For us it was just, 'you've got to leave it on the floor,' " said Anna Kieltyka, who had 6 points but was the focal point of the defense with 4 first-half steals. "In the playoffs, any game could be your last at this point. The more we play together, the more we play our game, the better we do."
"We just got together and we knew that we had to refocus because in regionals its one and done," Skibinski said. "So we knew that we couldn't give it away that easily."
After the break, the Chargers scored the first 7 points. Alyssa Crenshaw started things with a layup. Boado nailed a 3-pointer. Crenshaw grabbed a defensive rebound and fed Skibinski on the break for a layup. The Chargers slowly pulled away from there, outscoring the Royals 18-8 in the fourth quarter to seal it.
Crenshaw finished with 8 points and 6 rebounds for D-C. Skibinksi had 4 rebounds and 4 assists.
Young accounted for nearly half of Larkin's points. Aiexia Saldivar contributed 6 off the bench for the Royals.