GIRLS BASKETBALL

L.C. keeps cool for big second half and DAC West tourney win

2013-12-27T21:15:00Z 2014-02-03T20:44:30Z L.C. keeps cool for big second half and DAC West tourney winHillary Smith hillary.smith@nwi.com, (219) 933-3233 nwitimes.com
December 27, 2013 9:15 pm  • 

CROWN POINT | There is no panic in Times No. 1 Lake Central's girls basketball team.

Down nine points to MerrillvilleĀ at halftime in the inaugural DAC West tournament championship game? Nope, no panic.

The Indians came out and scored 10 points in the first 3 minutes, 28 seconds and held onto that winning feeling for a 52-50 victory.

"We talk all the time about playing 32 minutes and playing every possession," Lake Central coach Marc Urban said. "We found ways to get some stops late and we were able to get big rebounds. We know that late in the game we have to be tough."

L.C. (12-1) had to play a close game in the semifinals, beating Crown Point, 45-41, before the Bulldogs topped Portage, 49-21, in the consolation finals. Merrillville beat Portage, 45-34, to reach the finals.

In the morning semifinal, Lindsay Kusbel scored just four points, hitting 1-of-7 from the field and 1-of-6 from the free-throw line. Despite missing her first shot against Merrillville in the late game, she shook off the miss and went on to lead the game with 17 points.

See, no panic.

"I was really proud of (Kusbel)," Urban said. "I was very happy with the way she responded after not having a great game this morning."

No. 3 Merrillville took its first-half lead behind a pressing defense and intensity that coach Amy Govert has been looking for most of the season. Inconsistency in shooting, however, hurt the Pirates (8-4).

Merrillville shot 21-of-56 (or 37.5 percent) from the field and 7-of-18 from the free-throw line. Conversely, L.C. hit 42.9 percent of its shots from the field and was 13-of-25 from the free-throw line, including 4-of-8 in the fourth quarter. Merrillville hit 2-of-6 from the free-throw line in the fourth quarter.

"I was happy with the intensity, yes. The shooting, no," Govert said. "We have big players who have to step up. We didn't have those super studs do what they were supposed to do tonight."

Victoria Gaines' double-double of 16 points and 13 rebounds led the Pirates while Rolanda Curington added 15 points for the Indians. A.J. Downs scored 11 for Merrillville.

In the consolation game, Crown Point's defense led a second-half surge that pulled away from a nine-point halftime lead.

The Bulldogs held Portage to one point in the fourth quarter while three players scored in double figures.

Hannah Albrecht and Katija Tarailo had 12 points each and Abby Kvachkoff chipped in 11 for the Bulldogs (7-4).

"We have been slow to start, that's it exactly," C.P. coach Annie Equihua said. "I'm not going to complain about this win. ... Obviously it depended a little on our competition, but I think overall we did a great job."

Portage (6-7) lost Alexis Johnson in the third quarter to what appeared to be a wrist injury. She led her team with eight points while Kaitlin Doud had five rebounds.

"We have an inability to put the ball in the hole," Portage coach Chris Seibert said. "Again, if we can't score, it's hard to hold on against good teams. We had a good run at the start of the third quarter, and then we lost Alexis. We need other people to step up."

The win ended a three-game losing streak for the Bulldogs, including twice to Lake Central.

Copyright 2014 nwitimes.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

Follow The Times

Fan Poll

Loading…

Which school has the area's best girls soccer team?

View Results

Follow your school

Duneland Conference

Chesterton Trojans
News
Crown Point Bulldogs
News
Lake Central Indians
News
LaPorte Slicers
News
Merrillville Pirates
News
Michigan City Wolves
News
Portage Indians
News
Valparaiso Vikings
News

Greater South Shore Conference

Bishop Noll Warriors
News
Calumet Warriors
News
Lake Station Eagles
News
Michigan City Marquette Blazers
News
North Newton Spartans
News
River Forest Ingots
News
Wheeler Bearcats
News
Whiting Oilers
News

Great Lakes Athletic Conference

Clark Pioneers
News
Gavit Gladiators
News
Hammond Wildcats
News
Morton Governors
News

Hoosier Conference

Rensselaer Bombers
News

Northwest Crossroads Conference

Andrean 59ers
News
Griffith Panthers
News
Highland Trojans
News
Hobart Brickies
News
Kankakee Valley Kougars
News
Lowell Red Devils
News
Munster Mustangs
News

Northwestern Conference

Lew Wallace Hornets
News
Roosevelt Panthers
News
West Side Cougars
News

Porter County Conference

Boone Grove Wolves
News
Hanover Central Wildcats
News
Hebron Hawks
News
Kouts Mustangs/Fillies
News
LaCrosse Tigers
News
Morgan Twp. Cherokees
News
South Central Satellites
News
Washington Twp. Senators
News
Westville Blackhawks
News

Independents

Bowman Academy Eagles
News
Calumet Christian
News
Campagna Academy
News
Covenant Christian Knights
News
E.C. Central Cardinals
News
Hammond Baptist Swordsman
News
Luther East Eagles
News

Chicago Catholic League

Mt. Carmel Caravan
News
Seton Academy Sting
News
St. Francis deSales Pioneers
News

Chicago Public League

Washington Minutemen/Minutewomen
News

East Suburban Catholic

Marian Catholic Spartans
News

Metro Suburban

Illiana Christian Vikings
News

River Valley Conference

Beecher Bobcats/Ladycats
News
Illinios Lutheran Chargers
News

South Suburban Blue

T.F. North Meteors
News
T.F. South Rebels
News

Southland Athletic Conference

Bloom Twp. Blazin' Trojans
News
Crete-Monee Warriors
News

SouthWest Suburban Blue

Homewood-Flossmoor Vikings
News

SouthWest Suburban Red

Thornridge Falcons
News
Thornton Wildcats
News
Thornwood Thunderbirds
News