Posted On: 03/4/19 8:00 AM
The IHSA Class 4A state championship and third-place game were both full of excitement as Hononegah slips past Benet for third, and Maine West takes home their first title since 1988.
Hononegah 43, Benet Academy 39.
Opposite of their slower start to McAuley in the Semi’s, Benet jumped out to an early 12-3 at the end of the first quarter in the 3rd Place match. However, the second quarter was really where the game was decided. Hononegah outscored Benet 20-10 and took a ton of momentum, along with the lead, into halftime. Benet used a solid fourth quarter to make a run, but the deficit was too much for the Redwings to overcome.
The difference in the game: Untimely turnovers leading to Fast-Break points. All year, Benet has been one of the more discipline teams when taking care of the ball, so the 18 they had in this game was very unlike them. Hononegah did a good job of jumping the passing lanes and turning those takeaways into 10 Fast Break points, compared to Benet’s zero.
MVP: Cali Schmitz – 10 points (3-8/1-3/3-6), 9 rebounds, 5 steals.
Benet impression: I thought that the Redwings played a little more like themselves than they did against McAuley, but still rushed the ball too quickly, leading to costly turnovers. Brooke Schramek (2020) was excellent, leading the way with 17 points, but was the only Benet player in double figures. Defensively, I thought that they did a great job. They forced 17 turnovers out of Hononegah and held Marquette-bound Jordan King to 15 points on 4-16 shooting, which is not easy to do.
Hononegah impression: Statistically, these teams were similar throughout the game. Where Hononegah had the edge, though, was 2nd Chance points, and fast break points. Hononegah had ten of each, while Benet just had two overall. While Jordan King (2019) had a rather inefficient night shooting the ball, she stepped up and hit some big shots late to keep the Lady Indians out in front.
Maine West 58, Mother McAuley 46.
The game was closer than the score indicated, but Maine West was able to overcome an early deficit to end their perfect season with a state championship. Mother McAuley played terrifically, but were just unable to keep pace with the Warriors and their Division 1 bound athletes.
The difference in the game: Field Goal Efficiency. Maine West shot 21-34 (61.8%) compared to McAuley’s 15-48 (31.3%). Saint Louis recruit Rachel Kent (2019) and Angela Dugalic (2020) were able use their size and strength to overpower the smaller McAuley defenders and score at a high rate in the lane.
MVP: Rachel Kent – 19 points (7-12/0-2/5-7), 5 rebounds
Maine West impression: McAuley is a tough team to play against offensively because of how well they guard, but Maine West was able to settle in after the first quarter and take control of the game. While Kent and Dugalic (14 points, 11 rebounds) were great, Dylan Van Fleet (2020) was also able to make a big difference in this game with her 17 points.
Mother McAuley impression: I really can’t say enough good things about this McAuley team, not only from this State Tournament, but really the entire season. They rarely match up well with their size, but they are so fundamentally and technically sound, that you must play a near perfect game to beat them, which only two teams did this year (Montini x2 and Maine West). Jenna Badali (2020) and Grace Hynes (2019) are two All-State players, and for good reason.