WHEATFIELD | Calumet executed what it wanted to do on both ends of the floor but still came up short against Knox in the only semifinal game of the Class 3A Kankakee Valley Sectional Friday night.
Knox built an early lead on the way to a 45-26 victory and advanced to Monday's 7 p.m. championship against the winner of today's K.V.-Hanover Central semifinal.
Hanover made the decision not to make the trip due to the snow. The host Kougars will play the Wildcats at 6 p.m. tonight.
"We couldn't send the other teams home," K.V. athletic director Doug Greenlee said.
The Warriors (6-15) trailed 14-4 at the first stop and 21-8 at the half. They doubled their first half scoring in the third quarter but were still looking up at a 34-16 count.
"We know what we need to work on in the offseason," Calumet coach Dori Downing said. "We have a lot of work to do, and we know that."
She knows the challenges at Calumet to put a consistent winner on the floor. The Warriors won the sectional in 2009 but have struggled this season.
"I love winning and have won," Downing said. "I feel lucky and fortunate, but that's not why I coach them. That's not the only rule of success.
"They played hard tonight. Golly, if we'd have any kind of luck at all of making shots, we had to miss at least seven or eight from underneath the basket. By the end of the game, it had to be 14."
Hope Wagner led the Redskins (12-11) with 12 points, while Chelsea Combs added nine.
"We really did what we wanted on defense, but we didn't have anyone who could stop Hope," Downing said.
Jacqueniece Whitehead tallied a team-high 10 points for the Warriors, while Theresa Strong added six points and nine rebounds.
"We were trying to go with (Whitehead) and Strong to get some kind of inside game going," Downing said.
Knox coach Dan Huiezenga is happy to move on but doesn't like having to wait until Monday.
"I hate it," he said. "I'd absolutely rather play (today). Yeah, we have two extra days, but we're not going to know who we play until (Saturday) night so, in the sense of game-planning, it's actually worse."