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11/23/12 Buffalo Grove Maine South's Hailey Schoneman (45) grabs a rebound from Libertyville during their basketball game Friday, Nov. 23. Maine South won 54-42. | Dan Luedert~Sun-Times Media
The undefeated Maine South girls basketball team rallied from a four-point halftime deficit to defeat winless Libertyville 54-42 in Bison Classic action on Friday.
The Hawks (5-0) came out a little lethargic in an 11 a.m. start the day after Thanksgiving. Maine South star forward Jacqui Grant saw fewer minutes than normal because of foul trouble. However, the Illinois-bound Grant was plenty productive when on the court, finishing with a game-high 19 points and seven rebounds.
Maine South coach Mark Smith said the switch to a second-half zone, and the move of point guard Regan Carmichael to power forward helped jumpstart his team’s second-half performance.
“We didn’t meet (Libertyville’s) aggressiveness (early). They were winning a lot of 50-50 balls,” the coach said. “We talked a lot about that at halftime. Of course, we were in foul trouble. We had to be creative in the second half (with the zone and the position-switch).”
Carmichael, a senior, added 11 points and junior forward Hailey Schoneman, who also battled foul trouble, finished with 10 points and eight rebounds for the Hawks.
After trailing 31-27 at halftime, Maine South outscored Libertyville 19-5 over the first 11 minutes of the second half. A 3-pointer by senior Erin Kieny, her only points of the game, gave the Hawks their first double-digit advantage, 46-36, with 5:21 remaining.
Libertyville coach Greg Pederson said the performance his team’s best of the season. Though the coach said the Wildcats must learn to maintain their intensity for the full game.
“We played a good first half against a really good team,” he said. “We’re happy how we played. We took care of the ball, and we were closing out on shooters. But (Maine South is) really good. Hats off to Maine South, they wore us down.”
Senior Dana Kym led Libertyville with 11 points.
Maine South plays its fourth and final Bison Classic at 2 p.m. Saturday when it faces the host Buffalo Grove. Libertyville closes out its tournament at 12:30 p.m. Saturday against Westinghouse.
Pick up your local Pioneer Press newspaper Thursday to read more about the Maine South and Libertyville girls basketball teams.