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Defense carries South Elgin by McHenry
By Brian Schaumburg | Daily Herald Correspondent
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Published: 11/16/2012 11:00 PM

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Not much was going well offensively Friday evening for the South Elgin girls basketball team.

But it was the Storm’s defense that sparked an 18-0 run to break open a tie game and the Storm went on to beat McHenry, 46-33, in Dundee-Crown Thanksgiving Tournament play at South Elgin.

“We got to down to business on defense,” Storm junior Kennede Miller said. “On offense, we started making our layups. We started relaxing.”

The Storm (2-0) led 22-19 at halftime despite shooting 8-of-30 from the field. Laura McIntosh and Anna Tracy each hit a pair of free throws in the first 26 seconds of the second half to five South Elgin a 26-19 lead. The Warriors (1-2) scored the next 7 points to tie the game at 26-26 with 5:17 remaining in the third quarter.

A Cara Fahey basketball with 4:38 remaining in the quarter started the 18-0 run. The Storm led 37-26 after three quarters. Senior Kara Rodriguez, who led South Elgin with 10 points and 9 rebounds, scored to open the fourth and her basket with 3:59 remaining capped the run to give South Elgin a 44-26 lead.

McHenry finally scored with 1:52 remaining on a Katelyn Sena basket. The Warriors shot 5-for-24 in the second half and shot 11-for-52 (21 percent) for the game. The Storm forced McHenry into 25 turnovers.

“It seems to be the theme for at least the first two games, we’re playing good defense and pressuring the ball,” South Elgin coach Tim Prendergast said. “Offensively we’re turning the ball over a lot. We’re not shooting well. Anytime the opponent scores 33 points, you don’t have to score 60 points, which we used to.”

The Storm shot only 25 percent for the game (15-of-61) and turned the ball over 21 times.

“We definitely can score more. We just have to knock down our shots. We just need to calm down and relax,” Miller said. “We’ve got to know in our heads that we all can make them.”

Miller had 8 points and 8 rebounds for the Storm. McIntosh also had 8 points and added 5 rebounds. Tracy finished with 6 points and 7 rebounds. South Elgin outrebounded McHenry, 51-42.

Sena led the Warriors with 10 points. Brittany Avonts added 6 points and 11 rebounds.