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The Times

GARY — West Side couldn't stop Hannah Noveroske on Wednesday.

The Cougars couldn't even hope to contain her.

Michigan City's 6-foot-4 junior center scored 29 points, but it was teammate Janicia Anderson who was the hero in the end as the 6-1 junior converted a layup on a feed from Shellaya Miller with less than a second left to lift the Wolves a wild 66-64 victory.

"I was thinking, if I don't make this layup, we're going to run," Anderson said. "I was like, did I make that?"

West Side missed on its prior possession and City wound the clock down for the better part of a minute before the game-winner.

"We were trying to get it to Hannah, but if it wasn't there, we didn't want to force it," City coach Mike Megyese said "Shellaya recognized it. I was proud of them for battling back. We're getting everybody's senior night. We could've folded. We've had some tough luck lately. We needed it."

Cougars coach Rod Fisher went zone on the final possession to take away the easy lob to Noveroske, which M.C. used repeatedly in her 23-point first half.

"We tried one in front, one behind, then she got it in a little foul trouble and we were able to put pressure on their guards and make a run," Fisher said. "When we tried to take her away, everybody else has to rotate and we didn't rotate on the last play. That's how they got a lot of their points."

Noveroske scored 23 of her team's 33 first-half points, including 13 of 15 in the second quarter, as the Wolves (11-10) forged a nine-point lead.

"She's the most dangerous player in the area," Megyese said. "She's big, she's strong and she finishes."

Noveroske was blanked in the third quarter and sat for a good portion of it, picking up her third foul. West Side roared back, turning a nine-point deficit into a three-point behind a 13-point period from Jada Dixon, whose three 3s fueled the comeback.

"We weren't non-existent," Fisher said of the second half. "At crunch time, we just didn't have an answer. I still thought we didn't play with enough energy the whole game. When they were able to run their sets, they were able to get it to (Noveroske) on the block."

Noveroske had 14 rebounds and eight blocks to go with her 29 points. Joani Ashley scored 16 points, while Anderson had 13 and 10 rebounds.

"Most (defenses) are going to be on (Noveroske), so it allows everybody an opportunity," Anderson said. "There's always somebody open."

Dash Shaw and Dixon each had 23 points for West Side (15-7), Shaw keeping the Cougars close in the first quarter with a dozen.

"(Dixon) came up huge," Megyese said, "We knew she could shoot it. I thought we did a nice job on (Shaw) for the most part. People like to press us. DeNaya (Hall) was out, but having Katelyn (Halfacre) back to handle the ball helped."


Sports reporter

Jim was keeping standings on his chalkboard from the time he could print and keeping kickball stats in grade school at St. Bridget's. He covers all manner of prep sports for The Times and is a long-suffering Chicago Cubs fan.