Naperville North's depth swarms Waubonsie Valley
In the end Waubonsie Valley just couldn't overcome Naperville North's numbers.
Not that the Warriors didn't come close.
The host Huskies used their depth to remain unbeaten in the DuPage Valley Conference with a 59-55 girls basketball victory Saturday afternoon.
"They're hitting all these crazy shots, and that's really great and stuff like that, but I think at the end of the day we just kind of outplayed them because we had a deeper bench and we just had more energy," said Huskies senior Sarah Lockridge.
Some of that energy came from freshman guard Abby Drendel, inserted into the starting five for this game.
"I also think we outplayed them because we just had more confidence in each other and we just kind of played together," she said.
"I love seeing the freshmen start," added Lockridge, who came off the bench to score 7 points, including a pair of key free throws with 56.5 seconds left. "I think you guys really add something because you guys honestly just play fearless. I feel like four years going through it you kind of like see things, like you grow and stuff like that, but when you're a freshman you're just new to it. You haven't gotten impacted by every single game."
Huskies coach Erin Colletti is enjoying the flexibility she has with the ability to go 10 players deep and a group that shows no jealousy about starting slots or playing time.
"Different lineups against different opponents. We have a lot of strengths with our bench," Colletti said. "... So yeah, we've got a lot of ammo, which is great."
Not so great for Waubonsie Valley (9-13, 3-3). The Warriors played just seven and were in big trouble when leading scorer Ahniya Melton fouled out with 1:55 left.
"It's huge," Waubonsie Valley coach Brett Love said. "You've got to plan for different players. It's not just Greta (Kampschroeder) that you have to worry about. You've got to plan for rebounders and other shooters and things like that. We've only got five or six players. It's a little tough. But I'm proud of our team for fighting and sticking in there with Naperville North."
Naperville North (19-5, 6-0)took the lead for good with an 11-0 run to end the first quarter 16-7. The lead hit 16 when a Kampschroeder 3-pointer made it 38-22 early in the third quarter.
Waubonsie Valley fought to within 45-38 with an 8-0 run to close the third quarter, but the Huskies countered with their own 8-point run to start the fourth.
Still, the Warriors weren't done. A Mykah Berkompas 4-point play cut the margin to 53-49 with 2:29 left. But Drendel sank a pair of free throws, freshman Layla Henderson made one and Lockridge added her two free throws to counter a pair of Lauren McKnight 3-pointers in the final minute.
Kampschroeder led the Huskies with 15 points and 17 rebounds, and Drendel added 9 points. All 10 Huskies who played scored.
Melton led all scorers with 20 points and McKnight added 17, sinking 5 of the Warriors' 10 3-pointers.