Blagojevich, Maine South shoot past Glenbrook South
Maine South desperately needed some fire to heat up.
The Hawks' Ava Blagojevich then supplied the match.
Blagojevich knocked down five 3-pointers, four of which came in the second quarter. That helped Maine South burn Glenbrook South 61-41 in the semifinals of the New Trier Class 4A sectional semifinal in Northfield.
Maine South (25-7), which knocked down 11 three-pointers and forced 22 turnovers, will meet Loyola, a 69-66 overtime winner over York, in the sectional finals Thursday at 7 p.m.
Maine South struggled early to knock of Glenbrook South (25-8) for the third time this season.
"It is extremely difficult when you know each other so well," Maine South coach Jeff Hamann said. "It was just a matter of us playing our game and doing what we do well. And we were confident that if we were able to do that, we would come out on top."
Maine South forced eight turnovers in the first quarter. However, the Hawks could not capitalize on the solid defensive effort.
Glenbrook South was able to grab a 16-12 lead after one period. The Titans converted a trio of three-pointers in the quarter, with Sidney Rogers converting a pair.
That's when Blagojevich sparked her team.
Maine South forced five consecutive turnovers to get things rolling as the Hawks would scored 16 unanswered points.
After a basket by Ally Pape, Blagojevich drilled a pair of long treys. Blagojevich would then complete the scoring run with two more triples as Maine South opened up a 28-16 lead with just under three minutes left in the half.
"I think it was just like our energy on defense," said Blagojevich, who would finish with 15 points.
"I just started hitting them. I didn't really think about it. I just kept shooting. I was just thinking that the next one was going in. So that helped."
Maine South built a comfortable 34-22 lead at the half and appeared in complete control.
Glenbrook South had other ideas.
The Titans cleaned up their turnovers and stepping up their play on the defensive end. After surrendering a quick basket to begin the half, the Titans rattled off eight unanswered points to close to 36-30 with 5:03 left in the third quarter.
Again, it was the defense that got things blazing for Maine South. The Hawks forced a pair of quick turnovers and then ran off a dozen points in a row to open up a 48-30 lead late in the third quarter.
"It was a tough battle for us," said sophomore Katie Barker, who scored five of her seven points during that run.
"We just go after the ball when we are on defense. We are looking to get those turnovers."
Hamann liked the way his team played defense on Tuesday.
"We work very, very hard with that zone," Hamann said. "We have made some adjustments and our length and athleticism create a lot of problems."
Glenbrook South coach Scott Nemecek said that his team had a great effort.
"We battled out there," Nemecek said. "It stinks to lose. We played our tails off. We had way too many turnovers."
Rogers led the Titans with 13 points. Gina Davorija had 12 points while Anna Rosenberger chipped in nine points.
Meegan Fahey led Maine South with 16 points, Pape tallied nine points and Asia Kobylarczyk had seven points.