Wednesday, December 20, 2017

Metamora Girls Basketball beats Mid-Illini foe Pekin

Anne Peters defends Pekin's Tess Cascia Wednesday night in Pekin. Peters had a season-high
15 points in the Metamora win. PHOTO / CHRISTOPHER LEE

Pekin, IL - The Metamora Redbirds (6-8) (2-3) had a Mid-Illini matchup with the Pekin Dragons (5-6) at Hawkins Gym in Pekin Wednesday night, a game that was originally scheduled for December 19th, but moved to the 20th due to Metamora's final exam schedule.

Things got off and running quickly for the Redbirds offense, riding the efforts of Reagan Begole, who scored eight of her 14 points in the first quarter. Anne Peters also had the three-pointer working right out of the gate, hitting two of her three shots from distance in the first eight minutes. Tameshia Smullin was also able to tally a three in the first, and Metamora would have a 17-13 lead after the first quarter was complete.

Metamora kept the offense flowing in the second quarter, with Smullin leading the way with five second quarter points. Foul trouble started to creep into being a factor for the Redbirds, but they were able to play beyond that and take a 29-18 lead into the halftime locker room.

As it was most of the night, the Redbird offense didn't miss a beat out of halftime, as Alivia West had her best quarter of the game, scoring seven of her 11 points in this frame. Reagan Begole also had a four-point quarter, and Sierrah Seals got a bucket as well to give Metamora a somewhat comfortable 12-point lead headed into the fourth quarter, 42-30. However, the Redbirds would need to keep that offense where it had been the whole night, as there were a few instances in which Pekin would sneak back into the game, sometimes within 10 points.

Metamora did just that, outscoring Pekin 15-10 in the final quarter. Anne Peters had seven of her team-high 15 points in the fourth, while Alison Lee scored four points in the quarter as well. The Redbirds would go on to defeat the Dragons, 57-40.

After the game, Anne Peters thought things went well despite her needing to sit the bench with four fouls at one point.

"It's pretty stressful coming out on the bench, knowing that you can't foul again. I know my teammates will pick up wherever I left off."

As to the Pekin comeback that wound up not amounting to anything, 4th-year Head Coach Brianna Morrow said it had to do with multiple things, specifically citing one Pekin player.

"She (Molly Flanigan) did a nice job getting open. We just had some mental errors on defense, some breakdowns, missed some shots, and gave up easy buckets. It killed us."

The Redbirds had one of their best scoring outputs all season, only scoring more than 57 points once, a 64-43 win over Limestone on December 15th. Against Pekin, Peters (15), Reagan Begole (14), and Alivia West (11) were all in double figures for Metamora. Coach Morrow believes that those three can provide a big lift for her team when they're playing well.

"When we can get those three kids (Peters, West, and Begole) in double figures, then you have other kids that chip in with eight here, six here, four here, that's good team basketball. When those kids go, we go."

Metamora will take on a familiar opponent Friday at the Ottawa Christmas Tournament in Rockford East, a team that the Redbirds lost to, 36-34, back in the Galesburg Thanksgiving Tournament. Anne Peters says that nothing will really change as far as a game plan from the previous meeting between the two teams.

"The same game plan, like how we played against Kaneland, how we played against Newark, how we played tonight. That's how we have to play every game now. It's working for us, just having that team effort every game. That's what we need to bring into Rockford East and we'll be fine."

Coach Morrow had some praise for the E-Rabs.

"They're a really nice ball club. They're very aggressive. We're going to have to take care of the basketball. It's a nice challenge."

The Metamora - Rockford East game tips off Friday in Ottawa.

Redbird Scorers:
Anne Peters (15), Reagan Begole (14), Alivia West (11), Tameshia Smullin (8), Alison Lee (4), Kaylee Hieronymus (3), Sierrah Seals (2)

Redbird Leaders:
2's | Alivia West (5)
3's | Anne Peters (3)
Free Throws | Reagan Begole (6 for 8)
Rebounds | Alivia West (8)
Assists | Reagan Begole (5)
Blocks | Alivia West (1)
Steals | Reagan Begole & Alivia West (3 each)

Redbird Team Stats:
12 2's, 7 3's, 12-17 FTs, 25 rebounds, 15 assists, 1 block, 9 steals

Next Metamora Lady Redbirds Varsity Basketball Game:
Friday, December 22nd, 2017
@ Kingman Gym - Ottawa HS 
vs. Rockford East E-Rabs
4:30 pm 

Team Twitter Account (for live in-game updates) | @MetamoraGBB

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