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Momentum can be a fickle thing in basketball, shifting in the blink of an eye.
In Maine South’s 55-44 victory over Warren on Tuesday night, it shifted in 4.5 seconds.
The Blue Devils seized the game’s momentum late in the first quarter when Kylie Nedelka drew Maine South center Jacqui Grant’s second foul with 4.5 seconds remaining in the quarter. Nedelka split her free throws to give Warren a 17-13 lead, but Regan Carmichael answered immediately. The senior point guard collected the inbounds pass after Nedelka made a free throw, quickly dribbled to the three-point line and was fouled as she shot her three-point attempt at the buzzer.
Carmichael hit all three free throws and the Hawks (22-4) used that momentum, along with five three-pointers made by senior Mackenzie Duffy and arguably junior Katherine Miles’ best game of the season, to outscore Warren 39-27 in the game’s final three quarters.
“They were hitting all of their shots; it didn’t even seem like they missed,” Carmichael said. “But in that situation, we’ve got to relax. We don’t really panic in that situation, but it’s ideal that we have Jacqui on the floor at all times.”
Carmichael continued her dynamic run of high-scoring games – the St. Louis University signee scored 59 points in the three games preceding Tuesday night’s tilt – with 20 points on just nine shot attempts against Warren (13-11). Carmichael thrived at the free-throw line. She converted eight of her 10 attempts in the game.
Both Carmichael and Duffy (15 points) were supported by a solid game played by junior forward Katherine Miles. Miles, who’s seen her minutes increase in junior forward Hailey Schoneman’s absence, grabbed a game-high nine rebounds.
“She was fabulous. It was probably her best game of the year,” Maine South coach Mark Smith said of Miles. “She did have two buckets outside, but it was the rebounding, being in the right spot at the right time, and it was her passing that really made a difference tonight.”
Schoneman, who suffered a knee injury against Evanston on Jan. 18, is likely to return to the Hawks’ lineup for Friday’s game against Glenbrook South.