CALUMET CITY | For a few minutes, T.F. North was firing on all cylinders as it jumped to a 4-0 lead.
Then Marist's pressure wore down the Meteors and Brooke Wyderski and Tehya Fortune took over as the RedHawks won the Class 4A T.F. North Regional title with a 67-41 win over the host Meteors.
North (10-14) made it to the finals via a forfeit over Homewood-Flossmoor on Wednesday as the Illinois High School Association pulled the Vikings out of the state tournament.
"We just wanted to come out and play and we weren't worried about that," North senior Chanel Howard said. "We came out strong, but then their press was too much. We just could not adjust to it and it wore us down."
Frotune said they were able to pressure the Meteors, who committed 10 first-quarter turnovers and had 28 for the game.
"We had success with the press and got them to turn it over," Fortune said. "We got some baskets off of them."
So did Wyderski and Fortune. Marist (13-15) went on an 11-0 run and Forutne had 10 of her 17 points in the first quarter.
Wyderski got hot in the second quarter as she had nine points as the RedHawks opened a 32-21 lead. She put the game away in the third quarter as she drilled five 3-pointers en route to a game-high 31 points. at one point, she had more points (27) than the T.F. North team (25).
"I missed a lot of them (3-pointers) in the first half actually," Wyderski said. "So I was happy when they started actually going in."
Howard said they had no answer for Wyderski's barrage of 3s.
"She is a good player and she really knocked down some good shots," Howard said. "She got open and we just didn't play good defense at times."
Howard led North with 23 points.
Meteors coach Chris Pruitt said her team is losing three seniors, so playing in a regional championship is good experience.
"We played everybody and we got a chance to go up against a good team," Pruitt said. "We made mistakes out there, but I was more concerned with us getting that experience. We got some work to do before next year, but this is a good group."