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STOCK BASKETBALL

CROWN POINT — The Crown Point girls basketball team has a rotation of eight players who can be inserted in and out of the game at any time.

The depth helps keep the team fresh. The lack of a single all-star player makes anybody's guess who will have the hot hand when the ball tips.

On Tuesday, the heat came from junior guard Ellie VanDeel, who scored Crown Point's first 10 points en route to a 21-point performance in the Bulldogs' 77-45 win over Morton.

After an early part of the season without the scoring success she was looking for, VanDeel said she worked on her shot.

"When I'm not thinking too much about it, it starts to flow naturally," VanDeel said.

VanDeel missed one first-quarter shot and nabbed four rebounds, helping to propel her to 13 first-half points. She added an assist on a 3-pointer by point guard Mya Scheidt, who finished with 19 points for C.P.

The 21 points were a season best for VanDeel, who has reached double digits in scoring in each of the Bulldogs' last five games. She finished with a double-double that included 10 rebounds.

Crown Point (5-5) had lost five of its last seven heading into Tuesday's game, four by nine points or less.

With VanDeel's rhythm, the Bulldogs eased out to a quick 6-0 lead with in the first minute of the game that grew to 14-4 with five minutes left in the first quarter. 

"This was a good win," VanDeel said. "We've been so close in so many, what we needed was a signature win."

C.P.'s depth showed with two more players — Taylor Tyndall (13 points) and Abby Stoddard (12) — notching double-digits in scoring.

"That's what we strive for is to be as balanced as possible," said Bulldogs coach Chris Seibert, who picked up his 100th career victory as a coach. "It makes it harder for teams to focus just on Mya, or anyone else."

Crown Point, which entered the game with four wins and a sub-.500 record, plays a schedule ranked 107th hardest in the state by the Sagarin Ratings, and 61st in Class 4A. Morton's schedule is 226 overall and 87 in Class 4A.

The Bulldogs have swept the Govs in four previous meetings, all in the last four seasons. The closest Morton pulled was a 12-point loss (75-63) in 2015-16.

Morton played with senior guard Timisha Ray on the bench most of the second quarter after she picked up her third foul 90 seconds into the frame. She fouled out with 2:49 left in the game and four points.

"Our biggest concern was defense," Morton coach Apiphany Asberry said. "We can't seem to play consistent defense. We've let teams score way too many points. We were down 17 at the half and I told them at halftime to watch (Scheidt), their shooter. First thing she does is hit a 3, and we're down 20."

Hannah Hammar scored 16 for the Govs (6-4), with 10 in the second half. Dariel Woods added 11 and Khadijah Harper grabbed 10 rebounds.

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Sports Director

Hillary has covered prep, pro and college sports -- and even a Dixie Baseball World Series -- for newspapers north and south of the Mason-Dixon Line since 1995.