AURORA – The Rosary girls basketball team didn’t realize that scoring 12 points in the second quarter of Tuesday night’s game against West Aurora would fire up the Blackhawks’ defense.
The Royals scored two more points than West Aurora typically wants its guests to score in a quarter.
The Blackhawks stepped up their defense in the second half and allowed Rosary only 10 points the rest of the night in a 59-32 nonconference win.
“We set a goal before the game started, that we would only allow 10 points each quarter,” West Aurora coach Connie Siljendahl said. “The team was pretty upset with themselves at halftime, so they said they were going to come out, focus on that and stop them.”
“West Aurora is known to fight,” Rosary coach Jessie Wilcox said. “One thing I will give them credit for is they make adjustments as the game goes on.”
Rosary (4-2) started out well in the first quarter, taking an early lead. West Aurora (5-1) tied the game, 7-7, at the 4:29 mark on a short jumper by Abriya Zeitz. The senior, who led all scorers with 18 points, put the Blackhawks ahead for good, 11-9, with two minutes left in the frame. The Royals trailed 13-10 at the end of the quarter.
Rosary pulled within one point on two occasions in the second quarter. A Taylor Drozdowski (nine points) free throw two minutes into the quarter whittled West Aurora’s lead to 18-17. But on the Blackhawks’ next trip down the court, Alexis Wiggins canned a 3 to widen their lead.
With two minutes left in the half, a Quincy Kellett layup again put Rosary within one, 23-22. But once again, a Wiggins 3 widened the gap. Kellett was the top Royal scorer with 14 points.
Rosary trailed, 28-22, at halftime.
While the Blackhawks stepped up defensively in the second half, their offense continued to click and at the end of the third quarter, increasing their lead to 44-29.
“The adjustments we tried to make, the kids just didn’t catch on quick enough,” Wilcox said. “And before you know it, we are down [15 to 20]. And that is a hard deficit to come back from. It’s hard.”
Rosary, which finished the night 10 for 40 from the floor, scored three baskets in the second half.
“When you don’t score, it’s hard for your defense to hang on that long,” Wilcox said.
“In the second half, our shooting wasn’t too good,” Kellett said.” I think we were just rushing things.”
Both Taylor Jacobsen and Erin Jacobsen scored nine points for the Blackhawks.