GIRLS BASKETBALL

Lake Central, Merrillville will play for inaugural DAC West tourney championship

2013-12-27T14:15:00Z 2013-12-28T03:22:04Z Lake Central, Merrillville will play for inaugural DAC West tourney championshipHillary Smith hillary.smith@nwi.com, (219) 933-3233 nwitimes.com
December 27, 2013 2:15 pm  • 

CROWN POINT | Crown Point girls basketball coach Annie Equihua issued a challenge to her team at halftime of Friday morning's game against Lake Central.

It was not unlike the same challenge she issued a week ago to her Bulldogs at halftime of a game against Lake Central.

Last week, C.P. came within nine points of L.C. before falling 61-39. In Friday morning's Duneland Athletic Conference holiday tournament, the Bulldogs tied the game, then lost 45-41. Lake Central will play Merrillville in the 7 p.m. championship, and Crown Point will play Portage at 5 p.m. in the consolation of the inaugural tournament.

Equihua left immediately following the morning game to attend the funeral of her aunt.

"The second half is the way we're capable of playing, and that's the way we should be playing all game," Crown Point assistant coach Scott Reid said. "We are not ready to go out and play that way and we've showed it the last week. As well-coached as Lake Central is, you can't start a game like that against them."

Lake Central took advantage of the sluggish first half. The Indians held a 30-19 lead at halftime after a 14-5 first quarter.

Lake Central forced Crown Point into 17 first-half turnovers, and 24 in the game.

"We've got to rely on the things we can control," L.C. coach Marc Urban said. "We can't control whether the ball is going to go into the basket, but we can control our defensive pressure and how we respond."

The Indians' shots went cold in the second half, as L.C. was 3-of-25 from the field in the third and fourth quarters.

Defensively, the Indians made few fouls and kept C.P. off the free-throw line while forcing the Bulldogs to take shots they didn't want to take. C.P. was 18-of-47 from the field, including a 6-for-13 third quarter in which the 'Dogs out-scored L.C. 16-6.

"We had a lot of chances to take the lead and we had too many turnovers and missed a lot of shots," Reid said.

Tara Zlotkowski's 15 points led Lake Central and Rolanda Curington added 14 with six from the free-throw line.

Hannah Albrecht scored a team-high 14 points for Crown Point.

Also hoping to improve shooting in the break between the morning and evening games is Merrillville.

The Pirates fell behind early to Portage before taking a 20-16 lead at halftime. Merrillville shot 17-of-39 from the field and 10-of-19 from the free-throw line.

"We haven't shot well all year, and that's what's frustrating about this team," Pirates coach Amy Govert said. "We are as athletic as anyone, but we spend so much time on fundamentals. We shoot free throws before school and for 45 minutes during practice. I don't know what the problem is."

Led by A.J. Downs, who scored eight of her 13 points in the second half, Merrillville found its defensive pressure and intensity after the start of the third quarter. The Pirates forced Portage into eight third-quarter turnovers and outscored the Indians 25-18 in the second half.

"We have another level, and the last quarter and a half you saw it," Govert said.

Kaitlin Doud had 12 points for Portage as teammate Kaitlyn Steers added 11.

"We knew we needed to slow the game down and get a higher percentage of our shots around the rim," Portage coach Chris Seibert said. "We did as well as we could have. We just needed to lengthen our possessions."

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 cross country 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