Chicago Heights — T.F. North coach LaShaunda Bryce said she was happy with the way her team played in their Marian Catholic tournament game against Aurora Central Catholic.
The turnovers that have plagued North this season were not a problem Monday night.
Having her best player, 6-footer D'Azya Dunn keep her team in the game was a plus, as well. And coming back from a 10 point halftime deficit pleased Bryce with North having a chance to tie the game twice in the final seconds.
Finishing the comeback, though was not quite as successful. North had two chances to tie the game just before the buzzer but lost to Aurora 39-37 despite a 20-point night from Dunn.
"I saw a lot of improvement on defense, and we were more patient on offense. We usually average around 35 turnovers a game, but tonight we did a better job of taking care of the ball," Bryce said. "This game showed how good we can be when we put all of our effort into it."
That effort was needed after halftime when Aurora turned a 1-point North lead into a 27-17 advantage going into the locker room.
North scored only six points in the second quarter.
North then shut out Aurora the first 4 minutes, 37 seconds of the third quarter and with the help of eight points in the quarter by Dunn, shaved the Aurora lead to four going into the final quarter.
After a basket by Dunn cut the lead to two points, the North defense forced a turnover with 6.2 seconds left.
Dunn missed a baseline jumper and a weak-side offensive rebound attempt by the Meteors came up short to end the game.
"I think that hurt us the most, when we ran out of gas in the first half and they made that run and we trailed by 10 at the half, that really hurt us," Bryce said. "But I was proud that our girls fought back."
Ashley Coleman had nine points for North (5-4) while Taylor Harazin scored a team-high 14 for Aurora.