Tigers get defensive with Illini West to maintain WCC North lead


Share
Posted Online: Jan. 17, 2013, 10:36 pm
Comment on this story | Print this story | Email this story
By Terry Duckett, tduckett@qconline.com
SHERRARD — After suffering its first conference loss in two years Tuesday night at Rockridge, the Sherrard girls' basketball team had even more to play for Thursday evening.

With Carthage Illini West poised just a half-game behind the Tigers in the West Central North standings, Sherrard flexed its defensive muscles as it defended its home court and strengthened its perch atop the division with a 35-26 victory at Harry Hunt Gymnasium.

Forcing the Chargers (12-10, 5-2) into 25 turnovers and a frigid 6-of-35 shooting performance (17 percent), Sherrard scored 26 of its points in the second and third quarters to give it the cushion it needed to earn its 20th win of the season and snap a two-game skid.

"When we bring our best defensive game, our offense builds off of that and falls into place," said senior guard Carly Adams. "That's what happened (Thursday). Our defense set the tone."

Adams snared three steals and junior forward Riley Strandgard grabbed four to spearhead the Tiger defense, and both were equally key on the offensive front. After a 4-4 first-period draw, Illini West had worked its way to an 11-6 lead before the Tigers (20-3, 7-1) reeled off an 8-0 run, including Strandgard's bucket at the 2:57 mark that put the hosts up 12-11.

"If our offense isn't working, we can always count on our defense," said Strandgard. "Our motto the whole year has been to stay up and keep pushing. We gave it all we had; all our heart and effort showed on the floor."

Adams and Strandgard (11 points apiece) along with senior forward Annie Winston (nine points, nine rebounds) scored four points each in the second to stake the Tigers to an 18-15 halftime lead. Strandgard and Adams then combined for 10 third-period points to help Sherrard take control, building a 30-19 lead entering the fourth quarter.

"I think at practice (Wednesday), we had a lot more focus. We want to get better each day," said Adams, who also had five boards. "I think losing to Rockridge helped us. It opened our eyes, made us want to work harder and not be satisfied."

The Chargers' hopes of a fourth-quarter comeback were stymied by an 0-for-8 shooting clip down the stretch. They did hit six of nine free throws in the fourth and closed the gap to nine points but could get no closer despite a six-point, six-steal effort from Graci Bastert.


















 



Local events heading








  Today is Thursday, April 24, the 114th day of 2014. There are 251 days left in the year.

1864 -- 150 years ago: We learn that it is a contemplation to start a paper mill in Rock Island during the summer by a gentleman from the East.
1889 -- 125 years ago: The gates of Oklahoma were swung open at noon today, and a throng of more than 30,000 settlers started over its soil.
1914 -- 100 years ago: The Iowa Coliseum Co. was incorporated with $40,000 capital and planned a building on 4th Street between Warren and Green streets in Davenport.
1939 -- 75 years ago: Plans are being discussed for resurfacing the streets in the entire downtown district of Rock Island.
1964 -- 50 years ago: Some 45 jobs will be created at J.I. Case Co.'s Rock Island plant in a expansion of operations announced yesterday afternoon at the firm's headquarters in Racine, Wis.
1989 -- 25 years ago: Gardeners and farmers cheered, but not all Quad-Citians found joy Saturday as more than an inch of rain fell on the area. Motorists faced dangerous, rain-slick roads as the water activated grease and grime that had built up during dry weather.








(More History)