Stevenson opens with win over Barrington
Stevenson's girls basketball team used the one-two punch of sophomores Simone Sawyer and Ava Bardic to topple host Barrington 58-47 in the season opener for both teams at Barrington Monday night.
Sawyer, a returning starter as is Bardic, scored 25 points and pulled down 7 rebounds in the win. Bardic tossed in 16 points and Nikki Ware added 10 points for the Patriots.
"Sawyer and Bardic kind of picked up from where they left off last season," said Stevenson coach Ashley Graham. "They both came to play tonight. With four returning starters anyone on this team can have a big night. We have really good depth on this team. These players had a great summer and worked very hard in practice so it's nice to see their hard work rewarded tonight."
"We had to work hard to get this win," said Sawyer. "We know that Barrington has a really good team. We knew that we had to rebound tonight because that can play a big part in winning a game."
The Patriots used runs at the right time to take the lead and then extend the leads in the second and third quarters.
Tied at 14 with 2:41 left in the first quarter, Stevenson closed out the quarter with an 8-2 burst to lead 22-16. Sawyer scored 6 points in the run.
The Fillies clawed back with a 7-0 spurt to lead 23-22 following Shanna Turczynski's basket off a steal.
But Stevenson's 13-1 run built the lead back to 35-24 before the Pats settled for a 37-29 halftime lead.
The third quarter proved to be a tough one for Barrington.
Freshman Sophia Swanson (15 points) connected on a 3-pointer to start the quarter but Stevenson countered with a 14-0 run to lead 51-32 with 1:20 left in the quarter following Ware's three-point play.
"Even when we had that big third-quarter lead we never saw Barrington put their heads down," said Graham. "They battled all 32 minutes."
Stevenson went 0-for-9 from the field but cashed in 7 of 12 free throws to hold off the Fillies.
Barrington did cut the lead to 55-47 with 1:34 remaining but Bardic hit 2 free throws and Sawyer one to close out the scoring.
"If I can score, I will," said Bardic. "But, I also like to dish the ball off and work to get my teammates open. We worked hard this summer to that we can be a better team than last year."
Barrington's Taylor Thompson led her team with 17 points and 6 rebounds.
The Fillies were missing senior guard Anna Mae King, who is participating in the state diving championship at New Trier this weekend.
Coach Babbi Barreiro, despite the loss, sees good things on the horizon.
"We'll be all right," said Barreiro. "We're young and they have to learn to respond to pressure better. We have a tough schedule. Tonight we just had too many turnovers. We had too many turnovers and they took advantage of that and scored points off transition."