Girls basketball: Ponies notch first SEC victory

Gazette photo by Scott ErtleStillwater’s Meg Pepera drives past a Woodbury defender during Friday’s Suburban East Conference game at Stillwater Area High School.

Gazette photo by Scott Ertle
Stillwater’s Meg Pepera drives past a Woodbury defender during Friday’s Suburban East Conference game at Stillwater Area High School.

OAK PARK HEIGHTS — The Stillwater girls’ basketball team collected its first Suburban East Conference victory of the season while knocking off Hastings 43-28 on Tuesday at Stillwater Area High School.

The Ponies (1-5 SEC, 4-9) limited Hastings to just 11 points in the first half and held sophomore guard and leading scorer Hanna Norman to just nine points.

“It was good to get a conference win,” Ponies coach Gerard Coury said. “I think we’re getting closer to how we figure this team is going to play out the rest of the year. We’re starting to figure out who can do what for us and we’re getting closer to that. We’ve had some losses here, but we understand who we are and what we need to do.”

Natalie Johnson came off the bench to lead a balanced Stillwater scoring attack with nine points. Larissa Colvin chipped in with eight points and Annie Lauber added seven.

Stillwater struggled from the field, but was never seriously challenged in the second half.

“We did a better job of handling the ball, but we get those stretches where we just didn’t shoot well,” Coury said. “We went on a run in the second half to stretch the lead. Colvin made a couple of nice plays and Johnson gave us a nice spark off the bench, getting a couple of steals early. Haley Balzart played really hard and her and Paige Becker did a nice job offensive and defensive rebounding. When we’re not shooting we need to get extra possessions and those guys do a great job.”

 

Hastings            11            17            —            28

Stillwater            18            25            —            43

 

Hastings (pts): Hannah Martin 4, Hanna Norman 9, Paige Ahrens 1, Nicole Hollar 5, Lauren Thomas 2, Maleah Hansen 4 and Ashley Bayne 3.

Stillwater: Annie Lauber 7, Natalie Johnson 9, Larissa Colvin 8, Morgan Tschumperlin 4, Rilee Day 5, Haley Balzart 3, Meg Pepera 3 and Paige Becker 4.

3-pointers: Has (0); St (3): Day, Lauber and Pepera.

Free throws: Has, 12-20; St, 6-17.

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