GIRLS BASKETBALL

Puntillo, Chesterton wins Hawkins-less showdown vs Cardinals

2013-12-03T21:00:00Z 2014-01-13T16:01:23Z Puntillo, Chesterton wins Hawkins-less showdown vs CardinalsHillary Smith hillary.smith@nwi.com, (219) 933-3233 nwitimes.com
December 03, 2013 9:00 pm  • 

EAST CHICAGO | When E.C. Central girls basketball coach Eric Kundich put Chesterton on the schedule, it was with the hope to see a Tiajaney Hawkins-Caroline Puntillo matchup in early December.

Instead, Cardinals star Hawkins was relegated to the disabled list, while Chesterton's Puntillo rode rampantly over the menagerie of youngsters that dot the E.C. Central starting roster.

Hawkins, who broke the bottom of her middle finger in her right shooting hand Nov. 11, has played one half and a few short minutes of her junior season.

Puntillo was averaging 23.2 points per game heading into Tuesday's matchup against E.C. Central.

The senior didn't disappoint. She scored 18 by halftime and finished with 27 points, 10 rebounds and five steals as Chesterton dominated in the second half of a 64-37 win.

The Trojans (3-3) used a 13-0 run to end the first quarter and start the second to take a lead from the young Cardinals. Puntillo had 11 of her team's 13 second-quarter points, most from the paint, as Chesterton had problems hitting outside shots. The Trojans were 0-for-11 from behind the 3-point line in the first half.

"I told them at halftime not to stop taking them, but to make them," Chesterton coach Jack Campbell said. "When you miss a couple, it gets into your head."

Jocelyn Lipscomb added 16 points, including a 3, as the Trojans hit three of them in the fourth quarter.

By the second half, E.C. Central showed fatigue, and Chesterton opened the game with an 8-0 run to start the third quarter.

"It's tougher on them without their best player," Campbell said. "I know if we lost Caroline, we'd be in trouble."

Hawkins is slated to have the cast removed Thursday, but her first game back likely won't be next week at Andrean.

"My heart is ready; my head is ready; I'm just waiting for my hand to heal, so that I'm physically ready," Hawkins said while running the clock for the junior varsity game. "It still hurts. It's sore and just weak."

The neon green cast that adorns her right hand is the second applied for the finger injury. So determined was she to return to the court as soon as possible, she worked out continuously after she first broke her finger that her arm thinned, and the cast was too big. Her teammates all signed the first one.

The second one, Hawkins won't let anyone sign. Instead, she drew a basketball on it.

While Hawkins still feels pain in her finger, her coaches hope that she'll be back by a game Dec. 14 against South Bend Clay, or at the latest for the South Bend Washington Tournament after Christmas.

"There have been a lot of growing pains," E.C. Central coach Eric Kundich said before his team played Chesterton. "You usually look to juniors and seniors for leadership on the court in some of these situations, and they're not there."

Against a Cardinals roster that started two freshmen and three sophomores, the Trojans struggled early. Chesterton has no freshmen or sophomores on its varsity roster, instead boasting four seniors and eight juniors. All four seniors started and forced E.C. Central into 29 turnovers.

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

Follow The Times

Fan Poll

Loading…

Who was the area's best baseball player this season?

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