Lady Wolves overcome Wildcats' quick start, advance in PCC Tourney with 53-46 win over Hanover

A Special Report by Mark Smith

Team /Record 1 2 3 4 Final
BOONE GROVE (14-1) 10 19 7 17 53
HANOVER CENTRAL (11-4) 16 11 4 15 46

Tuesday, January 17, 2012 - Porter County Conference (PCC) girls basketball quarterfinal at Morgan Township, IN

Boone Grove's Paige Aguilera (20) guards Hanover Central's Blayr Poston (11) in the quarterfinals of the PCC tournament at Morgan Township. Poston scored 25 points but Boone won 53-46. (All photos by Mark Smith)
Emily Bobrowski (15) checks the bench for instructions as Boone takes on Hanover in the 2012 Porter County Conference (PCC) tournament.
Morgan Township High School hosted all the quarterfinal and semifinal games of the PCC girls tournament.
Hanover Central's Frankie Turturillo (20) attacks the basket at the PCC tournament at Morgan Township. (All photos by Mark Smith)
Hanover Central's Emily Blue (25) tries to block Boone's Claudia Cooper (30) in the PCC quarterfinals Tuesday night (1-17-12) at Morgan Township.
Boone coach Candy Wilson talks strategy with the Wolves, two-time defending PCC tourney champions.
Hanover's Katie Dominguez (31) looks to make a play in the PCC quarterfinals Tuesday (1-17-2012) against Boone Grove.
Boone Grove's Claudia Cooper (30) gets ready for the inbounds pass against Hanover Central. In a quarterfinal match up of the PCC's top two teams, Boone topped Hanover 53-46. (All photos by Mark Smith)

BOONE GROVE (53) Emily Bobrowski 3-5-13, Julie Hogg 1-5-7, Claudia Cooper 1-2-4, Brittany Shaffer 3-4-10, Brittany Slicker 2-0-4, Morgan Marshall 1-0-2, Paige Aguilera 6-1-13, Anna Cantwell 0-0-0, Faith Dammarell 0-0-0. TOTALS: 17 (17-26) 53.

HANOVER (46) Emily Blue 1-2-4, Kristin Roper 3-3-9, Blayr Poston 7-7-25, Katie Dominguez 2-0-5, Frankie Turturillo 0-3-3, Tiphani Ward 0-0-0, Hannah Blue 0-0-0, Summer Pattison 0-0-0. TOTALS: 14 (15-20) 46.

FREE THROWS: BOONE (17-26, 65.3%) Bobrowski 5-8, Hogg 5-6, Coper 2-5, Shaffer 4-4, Aguilera 1-3. HANOVER (15-20, 75%) Poston 7-8, Roper 3-4, Turturilo 3-4, Blue 2-4.

REBOUNDS: BOONE (23) Aguilera 9, Shaffer 5, Hogg 3, Cooper 3, Slicker 2, Marshall: HANOVER (25) Roper 7, Ward 5, Emily Blue 5, Poston 4, Dominguez 3, Turturtillo.

ASSISTS: BOONE (8) Hogg 3, Bobrowski 2, Slicker, Mastey, Aguilera; HANOVER (9) Dominguez 4, Turturillo 2, Poston 2, Ward.

STEALS: BOONE (12) Slicker 4, Bobrowski 3, Hogg 3, Aguilera 2; HANOVER (9) Poston 4, Roper 2, Turturillo, Dominguez, Emily Blue.

FOULED OUT: HC (1) Tiphani Ward (4th Q) 3:09 left.

3-GOALS: BOONE (2) Emily Bobrowski 2; HANOVER (3) Blayr Poston 2, Katie Dominguez.

Porter County Conference (PCC) Tournament

GIRLS - OUARTERFINALS at Morgan Township
1-16-12 - Kouts 43, Hebron 33
1-16-12 - South Central 46, LaCrosse 33
1-17-12 - Morgan Township 53, Washington Township 24

SEMIFINALS at Morgan Township
1-20-12 (Fri) Kouts (10-6) vs. South Central (7-9).
1-20-12 (Fri.) BOONE (14-1) vs. Morgan Township (7-8) 7:30 p.m.

MORGAN TOWNSHIP (1-17-2012) Hanover lived up to their role as challenger, but Boone Grove finally lived up to their reputation as champion in the key quarterfinal game of the 40th Porter County Conference (PCC) tournament.

Hanover jumped to a nine-point first quarter lead and later rallied for a 31-30 third quarter edge, but the two-time defending PCC champ Wolves held HC to just four third quarter points and made almost all their free throws in the final quarter to win 53-46.

The Lady Cats (11-4) made just 14 field goal attempts in the entire game and even though the effort was there in a very spirited game, Hanover didn't have the weapons to win a match up of the PCC's top two teams.

"That hurt us," admitted HC coach Doug Nelson. "With Tiphani (Ward) in foul trouble and Rylie (Singleton) not able to play, we just couldn't make enough shots."

Boone (14-1), which has only lost to Bowman Academy, calmed down a wild, scrambling game and slowly edged ahead in the second half to slide into the driver's seat of the eight-team league championship tournament.

Boone senior Paige Aguilera, now 5-foot-10, scored six in the second quarter and seven in the fourth quarter. But it was her nine rebounds and all-court play that also helped turn the game around.

"Paige grew four inches over the summer," said Wilson. "She played really good defense on Blayr. She hit a couple of shots that I don't know how she hit."

This may not be Boone's most skilled team, but this is a more physical team than coach Candy Wilson usually has.

"That's playing a lot of AAU ball," said Wilson. "We've got some bodies. These girls have played a lot of people and they aren't intimidated by anything."

Wilson said that some of that 'high spirit' led to some of the eight fourth quarter turnovers by the winners.

"They're a little too confident," she said. "We're throwing the ball all over the place at the end and we're up nine. I said, 'What are we doing?'"

Boone has five seniors on the roster and they start three of them. Hanover has only two senior girls basketball players total and two of their top eight are freshmen. When everybody's yelling and there's a jump ball every two minutes and players are getting knocked down, older players usually prevail.

Hanover coach Doug Nelson wanted his girls to adopt some of Boone's 2012 attitude.

"We've got to learn to match their swagger," said the Hanover coach. "When they (Boone) walk on the floor. When they walk in the gym they expect to win. My kids are ducking out of the way of elbows instead of applying them themselves."

Hanover jumped to a 16-7 lead with 1:18 left in the first period as leading scorer Blayr Poston scored 10 first quarter points. Trailing 17-10, Boone got a boost from soccer star Paige Aguilera, who scored six in the second quarter on steals and offensive rebounds to help Boone pull ahead 29-27 at halftime.

"We came out right," said Nelson. "We hit our free throws and got them in some foul trouble. Aguilera scored on some breakaways. Second chance baskets. I thought we gave a good effort, but our execution wasn't real good. We've got to work a lot on that. How many baskets did we miss inside the lane?"

Hanover, which built the early lead on 11 of 14 first half foul shooting, rallied to take a 31-30 lead with 5:21 left in the third quarter and then didn't score a field goal until Katie Dominguez' basket with 4:23 left in the game. Despite a flurry of turnovers, Boone led 41-34 at that point and Hanover never got closer than 47-42 (with 1:40 left) after that.

Boone, led by Aguilera, double-teamed HC's Blayr Poston and The Lady Cats, without injured Riley Singleton and foul-plagued three-point shooter Tiphani Ward, could not create and make shots.

Boone coach Candy Wilson says she worries about Hanover, the only PCC team in Lake County, and the only one Boone does not play prior to the PCC tourney.

"Oh yeah," she said. "I saw them once, but I like to see everybody at least twice before we play them. They're athletic and tough and we play them again (this) week."

The disappointing aspect of this game for HC, on top of the loss, was that Hanover was already 4-0 against PCC teams and would have been favored over anybody but Boone. But the defeat not only kicked HC out of the PCC tournament, it slashed their overall schedule to 19 games instead of the 21 they'd have played had they reached the title game.

"I hate that part of this tournament," Nelson said. "We're trying to see about a consolation bracket. Are you allowed to call somebody else who got eliminated in a tournament and schedule another game since we only have 19 games now? That's where we are right now. We don't want to sit out the week."

PCC NOTES: It does not look like Hanover sophomore Riley Singleton will play before the end of the regular season next week. Singleton, a starter for the first half of the season, hurt her ankle against Oregon-Davis in late December, but she came back off that to score 10 points against Morgan Township on Jan. 10. But coach Doug Nelson reports that Singleton suffered a type of sprained knee in practice after that game and she was in street clothes at the PCC tournament.

"I don't know exactly what she has," said the coach. "She hurt the ankle before. Played well against Morgan. But then she goes down with the knee. We need her but we may have to find someone else."

Singleton is a good distance shooter and an athletic defender who was missed against Boone Grove.

A new equation in the Boone-Grove-Hanover rivalry is that Hanover is now a Class 3A school by enrollment. While HC will play Boone back-to-back including Thursday's rematch in Cedar Lake, that's the final game between the two league rivals this season as Boone is still in the Class 2A playoffs.

Boone has an imposing figure in 6-foot-1 sophomore Nicole Malouhos on the bench. She did not play against Hanover.

"She's getting better," said Boone coach Candy Wilson. "She's still a little soft out there and she gets pushed around. But we're getting her ready for next year."

Coach: Doug Nelson, 66-59 in 6th year at school, 81-86 in 8th year overall
Nov. 8 at River Forest {2A}  W   65-  18  
Nov. 15 at Highland {4A}  W   54-  47  
Nov. 23 Lowell {4A}  W   49-  43  
Nov. 30 Calumet {3A}  W   63-  26  
Dec. 2 at Hebron {2A}  W   58-  25  
Dec. 6 at Kankakee Valley {3A}   L   53-  57  
Dec. 9 Washington Twp. {1A}  W   57-  51  
Dec. 15 Gary Roosevelt {3A}   L   61-  67  
Dec. 21 Andrean {3A}  W   48-  26  
Dec. 28 Hammond Noll {2A}  W   65-  25  tournament
Dec. 28 Oregon-Davis {1A}   L   47-  73  tournament
Dec. 29 Griffith {3A}  W   50-  44  tournament
Jan. 10 Morgan Twp. {1A}  W   55-  39  
Jan. 14 at South Central (Union Mills) {1A}  W   57-  28  
Jan. 17 (n)Boone Grove {2A}   L   46-  53  tournament
Jan. 26 Boone Grove {2A}   L   48-  52  
Jan. 28 at Kouts {1A}   L   38-  42  
Jan. 31 at East Chicago Central {4A} 7:30 pm  
Feb. 3 at LaCrosse {1A} 6:00 pm  
Coach: Candy Wilson, 227-108 in 15th year at school
Nov. 11 Calumet {3A}  W   77-  30  
Nov. 12 Highland {4A}  W   82-  52  
Nov. 15 at River Forest {2A}  W   74-  28  
Nov. 19 Hebron {2A}  W   53-  23  
Nov. 26 at Andrean {3A}  W   60-  28  
Nov. 29 Kankakee Valley {3A}  W   63-  51  
Dec. 2 at Washington Twp. {1A}  W   65-  33  
Dec. 8 at Bowman Academy {2A}   L   44-  58  
Dec. 13 Kouts {1A}  W   56-  42  
Dec. 15 Morgan Twp. {1A}  W   36-  31  
Dec. 16 LaCrosse {1A}  W   67-  24  
Dec. 22 (n)Kouts {1A}  W   48-  32  tournament
Dec. 23 at Morgan Twp. {1A}  W   48-  21  tournament
Jan. 4 at South Central (Union Mills) {1A}  W   53-  37  
Jan. 17 (n)Hanover Central {3A}  W   53-  46  tournament
Jan. 21 at Morgan Twp. {1A}  W   39-  28  tournament
Jan. 21 (n)Kouts {1A}  W   44-  40  tournament
Jan. 24 at Lowell {4A}   L   38-  56  
Jan. 26 at Hanover Central {3A}  W   52-  48  
Feb. 2 North Judson {2A} 7:00 pm  
Feb. 4 Wheeler {2A} 7:00 pm  


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Revised: January 29, 2012 .