Illinois Girls Hoops Notebook: Top Performers and Trinity Blazer Notes
By Kaleb Carter
Each week, I’ll highlight the best team and individual performances from around the state Illinois girls basketball. It could be a state record, an amazing highlight or anything in between. Last season, I tended to base the top performers on stats from several games over the course of a week. For this season’s individual honorees I’ll be focusing on individual game performances.
As far as teams go, I want to highlight squads that upset highly respected foes, put up absurd statistical performances or set new program records — things of that nature — over the course of the week, which will be focused on results over a week and not just in one game.
Stats are critical to highlight these players and teams. Get in touch to submit a girls team or player at any point during the 2022-2023 season. You can submit stats to our Twitter, @ILL_HS_Hoops and @ill_hoop_scoops. I can also be reached at KalebCarter4256@gmail.com or on Twitter @Kaleb_M_Carter.
Editor’s note: Not every submission is included in the top performers. Choices made at KC’s discretion. Games eligible to be considered for top performers (excluding some Trinity notes) were played Nov. 13-20.
Notable Week 1 Team Performances
I saw the Blazers take down Taft on the road to open their season on Nov. 15, led by quite the effort from Ciarra Richardson. The senior point guard scored 23 points, including 15-of-17 from the free-throw line. She also grabbed 8 rebounds.
“Attacking is probably No. 1… always No. 1. Shooting is going to come second,” Richardson said after the game. “I just love running with the ball.”
Lauren Miller is an excellent piece for a contending squad, scoring 10 with 12 rebounds in that opening game, while Sophia Rodriguez has shown herself to be quite the shooter and Chloe Santos could come up big on the boards.
“We have a lot of good pieces, so we think we can go really far this year, especially since we have a lot of seniors,” Richardson said. “Our one goal is to win a sectional.”
The Blazers lost to Thornwood Saturday. On Monday they were led by Lauren Miller’s 31 points and 14 rebounds in a 54-36 win over Rosary.
Defeated defending 3A state qualifier Civic Memorial 50-41. Also has wins over Jacksonville and Hillsboro.
Defeated Whitney Young, the No. 3 ranked Illinois-Basketball.com team in the preseason poll, for the second consecutive season. They also beat MacArthur by 29.
Wins over Hersey (32-31) and Homewood-Flossmoor (61-38) have established the Corsairs as tough customers once more.
Off to a 4-0 start with wins over Dee-Mack, Riverton, Mt. Pulaski and Eureka to win the Clinton Turkey Classic, led by Cassie Cox.
St. Charles North
The North Stars rolled through the competition at the Burlington Central Thanksgiving Tournament, defeating the Rockets in the title game, 68-34. Amid a 4-0 start, SCN is winning by 45 points per game.
Mariann Blass and company have started hot, with relatively comfortable wins over St. Charles East, Downers Grove South, Prospect and Marist.
Aurora Central Catholic
They’re 4-0 after wins against Newark, Sandwich, Somonau and LaSalle-Peru, scoring at least 52 in every game. Riley Cwinski is off to a great start.
Started 3-0 with wins over East Moline, Pekin and Eisenhower (Decatur). Julia Sollberger combined for 35 points over the two games and had 6 assists versus Pekin.
Ava Gugliuzza has the Warriors out to a blazing start of 4-0, which included wins over South Suburban strongholds Providence Catholic and Joliet West (both by 3 points).
A win over defending 4A champs Stevenson (the second straight season they’ve beaten the Patriots early) has the Ramblers 3-0.
The Raiders are chugging along and looking at a potential spot in the Illinois-Basketball.com top 25. They’ve beaten Boylan, Hononegah and Saint Viator, all by double digits.
Won Mundelein’s tournament and went 5-0. Closest game was an 18-point victory.
At 4-0 after a week, the Timberwolves have something good brewing. Knocked off perennially strong Watseka and Bishop McNamara in consecutive games.
Notable Week 1 Individual Game Performances
Madison Davis, Marian l Catholic, Jr.
33 points, 6 steals, 5 rebounds in a win over Latin.
Kloe Froebe, Lincoln, Jr.
39 points as Lincoln defeated Williamsville.
Shelby Bowman, West Central, Jr.
One of the state’s better scorers, had 40 points in win over BPC.
Ciara McMahon, Rolling Meadows, Jr.
26 points, school-record 8 3-pointers made in a 64-16 Mustangs victory over Jacobs.
Molly O’Riordan, Barrington, Jr.
31 points, 6 rebounds in 67-63 win over Maine South.
Lexi Kerstein, Deerfield, Sr.
Vermont commit had 29 points on 4-of-5 three-point shooting, 11-of-13 from the floor, 8 rebounds, 8 steals and 3 assists as the Warriors beat Schaumburg.
Mia Moore, East Aurora, Sr.
41 points, 9 rebounds and 4 steals.
Amiah Hargrove, Christopher, Jr.
28 points, 16 rebounds and 4 blocks in a DuQoin Tournament championship win over Pinckneyville.
Danyella Mprorokoso, Waubsonie Valley, Fr.
26 points, 9 rebounds, 6 steals and 2 assists in her first varsity game, a win over Oswego.
Audrey Sabol, Nokomis, Sr.
24 points, 18 rebounds and reached 1,000 career points in beating Vandalia.
Lexi Sepulveda, Plainfield East, Jr.
Exploded for 46 points as PE beat Lockport 77-59.
Grace Nelson, Altamont, Jr.
37 points and 8 rebounds in a win over Vandalia.
Denver Anderson, Mt. Zion, Jr.
The junior, who has recently been courting D-I attention, put up a robust stat line of 21 points, 11 steals, 8 rebounds and 7 assists against Jacksonville.
Ella Bequette, Woodlawn, Sr.
Scored 19 points and pulled down school-record (breakig her own mark) 24 rebounds in a win over Cairo.
Ruari Quarnstrom, St. Thomas More, Jr.
Scored 30 in a 71-38 win versus TCSV in the Maroa-Forsyth tourney.
Another strong win for the Lady Sabers tonight. Sabers won 71-38 in the 2nd game of the @MaroaForsythHS tournament. Leading STM were @QuarnstromRuari with 30 points, @EmmaDevocelle with 13, @ava_dickerson05 with 11, and @maddyswish04 with 7. Sabers play again Thursday! #Allin— STM Girls BBall (@STMgirlsbball) November 16, 2022
Shakara McCline, East St. Louis, Sr.
Scored 32 with 9 rebounds, 5 assists and 4 steals in a win over Gateway Tech (MO.).
Peyton Gerdes, Grayslake North, Sr.
Put up 35 points and averaged 26 points through 5 games.
Apple Guerrero, Argo, Sr.
27 points, 10 rebounds, 8 assists in a game.
Emma Yakey, St. Charles East, Sr.
21 points and broke the Saints’ record for all-time 3-pointers made.
Janae Kent, Oak Forest, Sr.
Scored 29 and shot 16-of-19 on free throws in a 55-44 win over Kankakee.
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