Grayslake Central rallies past Antioch

  • Grayslake Central's Madison Hoffmann is swarmed by the Antioch defense in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday.

      Grayslake Central's Madison Hoffmann is swarmed by the Antioch defense in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Grayslake Central's Madison Hoffmann loses the ball under pressure from Antioch's Mia Kaiser and Cambell Lazarz, right, in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022.

      Grayslake Central's Madison Hoffmann loses the ball under pressure from Antioch's Mia Kaiser and Cambell Lazarz, right, in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Grayslake Central's Piper Gallaher knocks the ball away from Antioch's Avery Larson in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022.

      Grayslake Central's Piper Gallaher knocks the ball away from Antioch's Avery Larson in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Antioch's Ariana Nikolov and Grayslake Central's Piper Gallaher pursue a loose ball in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022.

      Antioch's Ariana Nikolov and Grayslake Central's Piper Gallaher pursue a loose ball in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Grayslake Central's Isa Hollenstein stretches for the ball against Antioch in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022.

      Grayslake Central's Isa Hollenstein stretches for the ball against Antioch in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Grayslake Central's Piper Gallaher keeps the ball away from Antioch's Ariana Nikolov and Avery Larson in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022.

      Grayslake Central's Piper Gallaher keeps the ball away from Antioch's Ariana Nikolov and Avery Larson in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. John Starks | Staff Photographer

  • Antioch's Ariana Nikolov and Grayslake Central's Madison Hoffmann stretch for the ball in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022.

      Antioch's Ariana Nikolov and Grayslake Central's Madison Hoffmann stretch for the ball in a girls basketball game in Antioch on Tuesday, January 4, 2022. John Starks | Staff Photographer

 
By Rusty Silber
Daily Herald Correspondent
Updated 1/4/2022 10:14 PM

Grayslake Central's girls basketball team needed a good way to start off the new year.

The Rams took nearly two and a half quarters to find it and when they did, it was just what they needed to pull out a victory, as they rallied from a 9-point third quarter deficit and beat host Antioch 37-29 in a Northern Lake County Conference game on Tuesday night.

 

"We talked about it at halftime, that we were just being so passive on both ends of the floor," Grayslake Central coach Steve Ikenn said. "We were kind of letting (Antioch) do what they wanted. We had to start dictating the game. We've always said, the best offense is to play really good defense. We finally were able to get on a run because we pressured them in the second half and it paid off. It took (Antioch) out of their rhythm and put us in ours."

Grayslake Central (4-13, 4-0) counted on freshman Madison Hoffman, who had a career-high 20 points, along with 7 rebounds, 3 blocked shots and 3 steals. The Rams rallied from a 24-15 deficit with a 9-2 run and trailed 26-24 going into the final quarter.

The Rams continued with their energy with a 13-3 fourth quarter for the difference.

"It was the energy and kind of got us back into the game," Hoffmann said. "It was the atmosphere and it felt like we came back together again. We talked about things, changed it and executed very well."

Antioch was led by Ariana Nikolov with a career-high 15 points and 15 rebounds, but Antioch (7-8, 1-2) let its guard down and lost its composure.

"We mentally got beat and made some mistakes," Antioch coach Tim Borries said. "It was a snowflake, that turned into a snowball, that turned into an avalanche. We just can't play with composure, if the other team does that. (Grayslake Central) picked up the pressure. We did handle it but then we made a mistake. Like any team you break the confidence, you break it over and over. We just didn't have that in breaking their trap. We have 13 more games to work on that. We do have flashes looking good at times."

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