Girls Basketball Wins CIC Outright With Win Over Panthers

Posted on January 27, 2019 in Girl's Basketball, Winter Sports

Jenessa Hasty and Adrianna Trexler

Seniors Jenessa Hasty (right) and Adrianna Trexler defend vs. Eastbrook

Eastbrook scrapped throughout Thursday evening’s contest with Oak Hill but just couldn’t keep up with the state’s third-ranked Class 2A girls’ basketball team.

The Golden Eagles applied their size and strength to wear down the host Panthers 50-23 and put the wraps on a third consecutive unbeaten Central Indiana Conference season. Adrianna Trexler led three players in double figures with 14 points and Taylor Westgate contributed 13 points and eight rebounds.

Oak Hill finished the regular season 18-3 and begins the postseason Tuesday against North Miami in the 2A Sectional 37 at Manchester.

“Obviously we’ve got some seniors and we’ve got some size and strength and try to utilize that the best we can,” Oak Hill coach Todd Law said. “Moving forward now, I just told them in (the locker room) that you’re in a sudden death situation from here on out and we’ve got to play a good solid 32 minutes every night out.”

Eastbrook (11-10) remained close the entire first quarter, even taking an 8-6 lead following a Kylie Standfest 3-pointer. Oak Hill led 10-8 at the break, but the Panthers’ Sarah Foulk drained a 3-pointer and Standfest made another basket that put them back on top 13-10 just 1:09 into the second quarter.

It would be the Panthers’ last points for more than eight minutes until a Standfest basket two minutes into the third quarter. By then, the Eagles scored nine unanswered points to close out the first half and took a 19-13 lead into halftime, then throttled the Panthers for the final 16 minutes.

“It’s tough to play them for a whole game,” Eastbrook coach Jeff Liddick said of Oak Hill. “Kylie and Joselyn (Martinez) stayed in the whole game and Sarah pretty much stayed in the whole game, and that’s tough to do against a team like that.

“It’s hard to battle every single possession for 32 minutes and they wore us down,” he added. “But we didn’t quit. We continued to battle regardless of the situation, and that’s what I love about this group of kids.”

The Eagles methodically exerted control and with the game still close a 24-18 ran off eight straight points over the final 4 1/2 minutes of the third quarter for a 34-18 advantage. In the second half, the Panthers scored 10 points on 4-of-14 shooting and that included a pair of 3-point baskets.

Westgate, the Eagles’ all-state center, was triple-teamed in the low post during the first half and scored six points on limited touches. The rest of the team wasn’t faring any better from outside and went into the locker room shooting 32 percent (7-of-22) from the floor.

“I tried to keep my composure,” Westgate said of the collapsing defense, “and a lot of my teammates helped me out. (Eastbrook) had a great defense and a lot of my teammates were open and I hit them for the shot.

“We were working more as a team in the second half,” she added. “The first half we were kind of everywhere.”

Law thought the halftime adjustments helped open up the Eagles offense and it was evident in the 63 percent shooting (12-of-19) in the second half.

“We put Taylor at the high post rather than the low post and got her the ball, which allowed her some space to operate and get to the basket,” he said. “We didn’t move the ball well in the first half and our cuts were slow. I felt after halftime we did a much better job in that area.

“And then we finally started to playing some defense,” Law added.

Oak Hill is the state’s second-best defensive team and lowered their average to 28.7 points, trailing only Seeger (28.0). Eastbrook connected on just 27 percent from the field (9-of-33) and was out-rebounded 30-17.

“We’ve been working a lot on our defenses in practice and we’ve been changing it up a bit,” Westgate said. “Our main goal is to give all of our effort.”

Trexler scored eight points in the fourth quarter and also passed out three assists. Kaela Robey contributed 10 points and five rebounds.

Liddick could find little fault with the Panthers’ effort, especially in the first half.

“Defensively, the first half I think it was our best of the season,” he said. “But in the first half we still had our legs underneath us and we weren’t tugging on the shorts, bending over near as much as we were in the second half. But the first half we game-planned it perfectly, we just ran out of gas in the second half.”

Standfest led the Panthers with 11 points and seven rebounds and Foulk was next with five points. Senior starters Standfest, Martinez and Zoie Ratliff played in their final home games and were recognized before the game.

Eastbrook concludes regular season play with a 12:30 p.m. Saturday conference game at Blackford and then begins the postseason at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday against Eastern in the Madison-Grant Sectional.

Leave a Comment