by Mike Slodki
There will be no repeating playoff opener success for Kaneland girls basketball in 2010.
Last year, the Lady Knights beat IMSA in an opening round duel in Maple Park before being eliminated by Hampshire.
This past Monday saw Kaneland be eliminated by the 3A regional host Lady Hubs of Rochelle by a 63-35 final.
The Lady Knights also lost at Sycamore on Friday, 62-52 and to Marengo 49-46 on Saturday, closing out regular season action.
Rochelle, the third-seeded outfit, was set to face (2) DeKalb on Wednesday, while (5) Sycamore, which upset (4) Burlington Central on Monday, was scheduled to meet the top-seeded Hampshire Lady Whip-purs in the other semifinal.
Rochelle improved to 18-10 (7-7 Western Sun Conference), and Kaneland finished its slate at 5-23 (0-14 WSC). Kaneland finished 8-18 a year ago.
Eleven different Lady Knights found the scoring column, led by Kelly Eversâ€™ seven points.
Seventeen seconds into the game, Nicki Ott drained a shot for the first basket of the game until Rochelle senior Olivia Caron hit two quick three-pointers. Departing senior Mallory Carlson hit a shot with 4:33 to go in the frame to close within 9-4, but Rochelle scored seven in a row to close the quarter out.
The Lady Hubs then continued their 19-0 run into the second quarter until a Tesa Alderman basket with 2:43 to go in the half made it 28-6 and continued a 7-0 run by KHS.
Kaneland recovered somewhat from their 10-minute scoring drought and trailed 31-13 at the break.
Rochelle led by as much as 36 points with three minutes to go in the third. Eversâ€™ basket with 53.8 seconds to go marked the final points of the season.
â€œWe just didnâ€™t play well, no excuses,â€ KHS coach Ernie Colombe said. â€œWe had nothing to lose; they played well, we didnâ€™t.â€
Against the host Lady Spartans, the Lady Knights fell behind early in their last ever WSC game 17-6 after one quarter.
Kaneland righted its ship somewhat and outscored Sycamore in the second quarter by one point, going to halftime trailing 29-19.
The Lady Knights were behind 46-37 at the end of three before Sycamore outscored KHS 16-15 in the fourth.
Kaneland had three girls in double figures, led by Carlson with 13 points, followed by Kylie Siebert with 11 and Emily Heimerdinger with 10.
The Lady Knights were 15-for-25 from the foul line.
On Saturday against the visiting Lady Indians, Kaneland was led by Nicki Ottâ€™s 14 points (4-for-4 FT) and Heimerdingerâ€™s 10.
KHS was 19-for-62 from the field.
The two squads were deadlocked at 13 after one, with Marengo taking a 23-22 lead at the break.
KHS snuck ahead 34-32 at the end of the third quarter before Marengoâ€™s Taylor Berman (19 points) hit three three-pointers and went 4-for-6 from the charity stripe in the fourth to key a 17-12 fourth quarter.
Other girls competition had Batavia beating the Kaneland freshmen â€œAâ€ squad 33-31 on Wednesday, Feb. 10. The sophomores lost to Marengo 50-29 on Saturday, but beat Sycamore on Thursday, 32-21.