by Mike Slodki
MAPLE PARKâ€”Kaneland girls basketball had a tough task ahead of it on Friday night in Maple Park with an improved Yorkville squad.
The fact that the Lady Knights went 17-for-52 from the field didnâ€™t help matters, either.
A tough shooting night that saw Kaneland make just four of 23 shot attempts in the first half and all seven foul shot attempts paved the way for a 49-40 loss to the visiting Lady Foxes.
KHS drops to 2-9 on the season and 0-4 in Western Sun Conference play.
â€œYouâ€™re not going to beat many teams when youâ€™re (4-for-23) to start,â€ KHS coach Ernie Colombe said. â€œAgainst Rochelle we were 5-for-31 in the first half. Weâ€™re not going to beat anybody shooting the ball like that, and thatâ€™s where it starts. We played hard all night, and we did a good job on defense, but some of the shots we missed were two-foot shots and point-blank shots at the basket, so we have to do a better job at that.â€
Lone senior Mallory Carlson had a productive night with a game-high 15 points on 7-of-8 shooting.
A Nicki Ott basket with 13.9 seconds to go in the first quarter closed the deficit to 7-4.
Life got more difficult for the Lady Knights in the second quarter. Kelly Evers and Emma Bradford supplied the only field goals, and Yorkville increased its lead to 19-9 by the end of the first half.
Down 25-11 in the second quarter, Kaneland made a run and hit five consecutive shots, thanks to Carlson, Emily Heimerdinger and Tesa Alderman, to close within 28-20 with 4:20 to go.
After the Lady Foxes went back out to a 34-22 lead with 1:54 left, Carlson made good on a putback, Bradford put back Carlsonâ€™s ensuing foul shot attempt, and Bradford then converted a three-point play to close within 34-29 as the teams went into the final quarter.
A Carlson free throw 71 seconds into the fourth quarter closed within 34-30, but the Lady Knights would get no further as Yorkville upped its tempo and went out to a 46-36 lead. Theyâ€™d hold Kaneland at bay for the duration.
The varsity troops take an extended break until picking up the action on Saturday, Dec. 26, at the usual Oswego East Holiday Classic stop. The Lady Knightsâ€™ first contest will be the host Lady Wolves at 6:30 p.m.