Fremd wins at Palatine, stays perfect in MSL West
As his Fremd girls basketball team made the nearly 15 minute trek to the north side of Palatine to face archrival Palatine High, coach Dave Yates, his players and assistant coaches as well as their lower level teams made it safely after having navigated and negotiated the roads being coated by a treacherous mix of rain, snow and wind.
Once it arrived, it encountered some rough seas of the hardwood variety as it struggled its way with the host Pirates heading late into the third quarter. Then, it created enough of an indoor mix of stingy defense in tandem with some added offensive firepower to sail past the Pirates 60-33 to give them complete ownership of the MSL West for the first time in three years after having shared the division title with Barrington the past two seasons.
It also makes Fremd (23-2, 9-0) 3-0 on the week thus far having won at Montini Monday in nonconference play followed by an MSL West road victory at Hoffman Estates on Tuesday that clinched a berth in the MSL championship game on Feb. 8.
It will complete its week of competition with a Saturday evening home contest versus Maine South.
"I think we didn't had enough energy in the first half, but at halftime (Coach) Yates had a talk with us and we came together and decided that we needed to pull away because this was our game. We did a nice job in the second half," Fremd junior guard Ella Todd said.
In particular it was the closing seconds of the third which allowed the Vikings the opening to close out Palatine as a quick steal, drive and layup by senior guard Sam Bodensteiner followed by a buzzer-beating triple by Todd gave them a 40-23 lead after three nullifying a 7-0 run by the home team that pulled them within 35-23 with 2:07 left in the period.
A Brynn Eshoo basket followed by Todd's fourth and final three of the night expanded the Fremd advantage to 45-23 just 50 seconds into the fourth.
Her final hoop on a putback with 6:23 left commenced a game-sealing 15-3 surge that had Fremd up 60-28 with 1:43 left before the Pirates (14-13, 2-7) tallied the final five points of the game.
Northern Illinois recruit Maddy Fay and IUPUI bound Kace Urlacher added eight points apiece in the division-clinching triumph for Fremd.
Junior guard Frankie Henderson (9 points) and senior forward Megan Van Brunt (8 points, 6 rebounds) paced the way for Palatine who travels to Northbrook for a Saturday afternoon matinee at Glenbrook North.
"Credit them (Palatine). They hung around and made some shots down," Yates said. "We wanted our kids to wake up and start playing. I was more pleased that in the past, even last year, (if) things weren't going right we would have a rough game. We were able to snap out of it and obviously go on a run and show what we're capable of."