Waubonsie Valley delivers its best against Neuqua Valley
Waubonsie Valley gave its fans a sense of what kind of girls basketball team it can be.
The Warriors took control of Saturday afternoon's DuPage Valley Conference game against visiting Neuqua Valley right from the start and cruised to a 65-32 victory in Aurora.
"We have practices and things like that and you hope that they come out and execute and focus, but this is the team I see a lot in practice," Warriors coach Brett Love said. "... This is the team that we strive to be. We had great execution. We were aggressive on defense. We got a lot of tips. We got a lot of steals. We finished layups. We knocked down some jump shots. Our 3-point shooters shot well."
With its ninth win of the season, the Warriors (9-10, 1-1) already are just one shy of last year's total.
"Our goal is to win the rest of our games and I think it's totally doable," said Waubonsie senior guard Megan Harrison. "We are going to beat our record. We want to be better every single year, so that's what we're striving for."
Three-point baskets by Halle Williams, Lauren McKnight and Williams again gave the Warriors a quick 9-0 lead.
"I think it was crucial to get our lead early on," Harrison said. "That was very important and helped us throughout the rest of the game, built our confidence early on. And we just kept rolling with it."
Neuqua Valley interrupted the run with a Claudia Gallegos free throw, but the Warriors followed with 11 straight points. They led 22-3 after one quarter, 38-10 at halftime.
Waubonsie Valley made 6 of its 11 3-point attempts in the first half. The Warriors also were very effective on defense with a 2-2-1 full-court press.
"I think our press really stressed them out a little bit," Harrison said. "I think it helped a lot. It made a big difference. If we didn't play press I think it would have been a different game."
Harrison came off the bench to lead all scorers with a personal-best 14 points.
"It felt good," she said with a laugh.
"I think that's who she can be every game," Love said. "She's very active with her hands. She's quick, one of the fastest players on our team. She had a bad couple of games, and I told her, I need you to wake up. I need you to play well tonight. She responded well."
McKnight and Iwiyisi Osaghae each scored 13, and Williams finished with 10.
Gallegos led the Wildcats (10-8, 0-2) with 12 points.