Grayslake North's defense frustrates Round Lake
Block. Rebound. Assist.
Grayslake North senior guard-forward Peyton Gerdes did all of the above -- in a 5-second span, incredibly -- at the end of the first half against visiting Round Lake in a girls basketball game Thursday night.
Better than that.
The High Point (N.C.) University-bound Gerdes finished with game highs of 18 points and 11 rebounds and had 2 steals and 2 blocks in the Knights' emphatic 50-19 victory in Northern Lake County Conference action.
But those collective stats took a back seat to what the 6-footer initiated with 11 ticks left in the first half. Gerdes collected a rebound off her own blocked shot and then whipped a pass to Grayslake North senior guard Reagan Kuzynowski (10 points), who scored a half-ending layup to up North's lead to 29-5.
Last season, on the same court, eventual NLCC champion Round Lake enjoyed a gargantuan 35-1 advantage at the break.
"Reagan," first-year Grayslake North coach Brian Frericks said, "did such a great job defending Lilli (Burton), an outstanding player. "(Senior guard) Anneke Holm played well defensively, too.
"Those two, with their tenacity, inspired the rest of our team," the coach added on the Knights' Senior Night.
Kuzynowski, on Burton, who scored 2 points: "Lilli is such a great athlete. We all knew how important it would be to guard her well tonight."
Grayslake North (7-6, 3-2) catapulted to a 16-2 lead, shooting 7-of-13 from the field in the first quarter. Five Knights tallied at least 2 points, paced by Kuzynowski's 5.
The hosts didn't let up a bit in the second frame, outscoring the Panthers 13-3. Round Lake (6-5, 2-3) got its first field goal -- a 3-pointer by guard Taleya Barnes -- at the 3:53 mark.
The first of Gerdes' 2 free throws at 6:14 of the final frame gave the Knights a 47-17 lead and triggered a running clock.
North capped the scoring on a field goal by sophomore reserve forward Mikayla Gumapas with 3 seconds left. Junior reserve forward Jada Kemp delivered the assist.
Six-foot junior forward Makayla Campbell finished with 6 points and 9 rebounds for the victors.
Panthers Judith Cerroblanco and Allison Dittmer netted 5 points apiece, and Burton grabbed a team-high 10 boards.