Each week, I’ll be highlighting the best team and individual performances from around the state that stood out in girls basketball. It could be a state record, an amazing highlight or anything in between.
Stats are critical to highlight these players and teams. Get in touch to submit a girls team or player at any point during the 2021-22 season. I can be reached at KalebCarter4256@gmail.com or on Twitter @Kaleb_M_Carter.
Editor’s note: Records are accurate through Sunday, January 2, unless otherwise noted.
Despite a Morton College Christmas Tournament title game loss to Fremd, the Geneva Vikings grabbed one of the more eye-opening victories of the season this year with a 59-53 win over Benet at the same tourney on Wednesday.
The balance of Geneva’s team, and the ability of players deep into the bench to step up and make meaningful contributions, makes the Vikings as dangerous as anyone in the state once again.
“They (Benet) previously beat Naperville North which we struggled against, and we had a pretty bad loss to them,” Geneva senior Zosia Wrobel said after the win over Benet. “So we were pretty excited to come out (with a win). They’re ranked really high, so we left everything out there and we were really excited from the get-go.”
“It’s just a great win, Geneva junior Cassidy Arni said. “I also think it helps us realize how great we can be.”
Geneva’s (11-4) losses have come to quality competition, including Carmel Catholic, Sycamore and Naperville North. The Vikings also have wins over eight teams with .500 or better records, including giving Deerfield one of its two losses.
Arni and Leah Palmer both made the all-tournament team at the Christmas tournament.
“We’re not riding one kid or two kids,” Geneva coach Sarah Meadows said. “We need everybody.”
The Vikings held a 29-15 halftime lead over Fremd in the tournament title game before Fremd made a furious run led by IUPUI commit Brianna Wooldridge.
“This is my last run, so I’m just leaving everything out there, Wrobel, who scored 18 in a tournament win over Rolling Meadows, said. “I’m done holding back. I think (we’re) playing with a team effort and I think I have that mentality locked in,”
She added on.
“I had really high expectations from this team and I told them that from the start,” she said. “We’re just trying to live up to those expectations.”
The Huskers are 16-2 after defeating Indian Creek 48-34 to win the Amboy Tournament. Makayla McNally, Paisley Twait and Katie Baker earned all-tournament distinctions as the Huskers defeated Mendota 63-25, Marquette 54-37 and Amboy 33-23.
Lady Huskers defeat a really good Indian Creek team 48-34 to win the Amboy Tournament. Great week girls. We improve to 16-2 pic.twitter.com/2tzvPvHnSi— Lady Husker Basketball (@LadyHuskers1) December 31, 2021
Caydee Kirkham and Rylee Reed led the charge for Illini West, which won the Beardstown Lady Tiger Classic, with both garnering all-tournament honors. A 66-51 victory over Mendon Unity clinched the title.
Kirkham scored 29 points in the championship game and averaged 20.3 points over four victories, including wins over Havana (40-32), Routt (54-20) and West Hancock (64-28).
This game has gone final. The Illini West Chargers are your 2021 Lady Tiger Classic Champions! They defeat Mendon 66-51 behind a huge effort from Caydee Kirkham. Final stat line 29/10/6.— 2021 Lady Tiger Classic (@2021_LTC) December 31, 2021
All-Tournament Team coming up.
Now 16-1 with a lone loss to Loyola Academy, the Patriots defeated Barrington 53-51 on Nisha Musunuri’s last-second bucket to earn Dundee-Crown’s 38th annual Komaromy Classic title.
The Patriots defeated Lake Park (50-25), St. Charles North (55-40) and Lake Forest (50-35). Ava Bardic reached 1,000 career points, while Simone Sawyer and Emory Klatt continued their strong play for one of the state’s best teams.
For the 1st time since 1995 the Pats (16-1) are the Dundee-Crown Tourney CHAMPS! Showed a lot of toughness, grit, and resiliency down the stretch against a great Barrington team.— Stevenson Girls' Basketball (@SHS_girlshoops) December 31, 2021
🏀Sawyer 24 pts
🏀Bardic 15 pts
🏀Klatt 10 pts
🏀Musunuri 4 pts (game winner!) pic.twitter.com/KbGQLlqvG9
Bounced back and defeated Greenfield/NW 55-48 to win the Carlinville Holiday Tournament.
Tylie Barton and Maddie Roberst both made the all-tournament team and Williamsville defeated South County (46-43), Nokoms (46-37), Lincolnwood (46-17) and lost to Calhoun (38-28). Alton Telegraph reporter Greg Shashack detailed the win over Greenfield.
Rockridge handed Monmouth-Roseville its first loss of the season and improved to 13-4 by winning the Cliff Warkins Holiday Classic, 42-29. The Quad City Times’ Terry Duckett covered the championship game.
The Rockets bounced back from a 51-49 loss to Moline by defeating Wethersfield (60-25), Brooks (73-43) and Mercer County (47-27) before defeating Monmouth-Roseville. Madison Heisch and Kierney McDonald made the all-tournament team.
Final from the Warkins girls' title game:— Terry Duckett (@TDuckett_DA) December 31, 2021
-- Rockridge 42, Monmouth-Roseville 29
The Rockets (13-4) win their first Cliff Warkins Holiday Classic championship after falling to Knoxville in the 2013 title game
Mon-Rose suffers its 1st loss after a 15-0 start
Danielle Beach scored 18 in the title game win over Washington (52-49) as Geneseo stayed undefeated (16-0) and won the large school division of the State Farm Classic. The semifinal game was a strong 68-51 win over Morton in which Kammie Ludwig scored 25 and Beach added 16. The Maple Leafs also scored victories over Springfield (51-48) and Normal West (67-42).
A battle until the end, the Geneseo Lady Maple Leafs come back from a 10 point deficit and defeat Washington to claim the 2021 State Farm Holiday Classic Large School Girls Championship.@athleticsGHS x @LadyLeafBball x @sfclassic #ClutchUp pic.twitter.com/3zqv2e46VX— Clutch Sports Media (@ClutchSportsIL) December 31, 2021
FINAL: Geneseo 68, Morton 51— Jackson Stone (@Jackson_Stoneee) December 30, 2021
The Maple Leafs made nine 3s. Each one felt like a huge blow to Morton. Ludwig had 25. Beach had 16.
Geneseo (15-0) will be in the championship game tomorrow night at 7 p.m. at IWU's Shirk Center. #HungryHobo11
Winnebago (17-0) claimed the small school title at the State Farm Holiday Classic, notably beating one of the state’s better small school programs, Brimfield, 57-42. Bellarmine signee Miyah Brown scored 21 in the win over Brimfield in the title game. (Brimfield’s Eastern Illinois signee Ella Lune scored 28 in the loss.)
Winnebago also defeated Riverdale (80-19), Camp Point-Central (33-21) and Normal University High (57-34) on the week.
Mallory Ramage scored 30 points in the title game of the Mattoon Holiday Tournament and reached 2,000 points for her career as the Green Wave downed Mahomet-Seymour 48-43
Mattoon defeated Marshall (64-46) and Teutopolis’ JV squad (73-27), as well as Mahomet-Seymour in pool play, 52-49.
Mallory Ramage may have eclipsed 2,000 points in the 2nd quarter Wednesday, but it was her constant pressure and FTs down the stretch that enabled No. 1 Mattoon to top No. 11 Mahomet for the 2nd time in 2 days and win the Mattoon Holiday basketball title.https://t.co/VbWHy2UJF2— Coles County Sports (@ColesCounty) December 30, 2021
The Rockets remain undefeated after beating Alton (65-58) in the championship game of the Mascoutah Girls Invitational. They also defeated O’Fallon (58-57) and previously undefeated Freeburg, 49-24.
Megan Rennebarge’s 21-point, 10-rebound double-doble led the Rockets past Alton. Briley Rhodes and Alayna Kraus were all-tournament selections.
Sydney Richards’ 21 points were key in Neoga’s 49-36 win over Tuscola to win the Monticello Holiday Hoopla Basketball Tournament. Neoga improved to 14-2, as detailed by Millie Lange.
Scored 32 points in a 40-28 win over Rosary in the Lisle Holiday Cage Classic.
Posted 29 points in a 51-43 overtime win over Antioch in the semifinals of the Lisle tourney.
Helped her team to wins over Reed-Custer (52-10) and St. Edward’s (46-33).
Varsity wins the Lisle Christmas Tournament with a 40-28 win over Rosary!! Claire Wagner led the Knights with 32 points. GO KNIGHTS!! pic.twitter.com/fhY37f88L0— ICCP Lady Knights Basketball (@IccpGirlsBball) December 31, 2021
Scored 20 in a title game loss of the Komaromy Classic to Stevenson.
Posted a 19-point, 6-rebound and 3-steal line in a 62-44 win over South Elgin.
Scored 37 points in a 75-39 win over Fenwick.
We wanted to Congratulate @sophieswanson31 on setting a single game scoring record for @bhsfilliesbball tonight by scoring 37 points! A phenomenal performance and a great accomplishment! 👏🏻 pic.twitter.com/2WGsvyd0P5— DCGirlsBB Tournament (@dcgballtourney) December 29, 2021
Averaged 22 points, 5 assists, 2 rebounds and 2 steals over four straight wins at the Hillcrest Holiday Classic, winning MVP honors in the process.
12/28/2021 - CONGRATS @mymybuckets for being named Hillcrest Holiday Classic Tournament MVP— Lady Lynx (@BCPLadyLynx) December 31, 2021
She averaged 22pts, 5asts, 2rebs, and 2stls over four games. #ButlerCollegePrepGBBALL #LadyLynxBCP #itstheBUTLERway #LynxEatemUp🐯 #GoLynx🏀🧡💙 #FeartheLynxBCP#LadyLynxwantitall pic.twitter.com/YSg81RYSM2
Made the all-tournament team at the Montini Catholic Christmas Tournament alongside teammate Olivia Vick.
Had 18 points, 4 assists, 4 steals and 3 rebounds in a 50-44 win over Loyola Academy.
Posted 19 points, 3 rebounds, 2 assists, 2 steals and 2 blocks in a loss to Naperville North.
Final game of the week Dolphins goes 2-2— Whitney Young Lady Dolphins (@Ladydolphinsgbb) December 31, 2021
Today's Leading Scorers
Destiny Jackson 18p 3r 4a 4s 1b
Skylar Jones 17p 4r 3a 4s
Maia Downes 7p 5r 3s
Thank you @montinixmastrny for a great tournament!! https://t.co/igsXKrj0PM
Scored 21 in a 59-27 win over Pawnee, her sixth consecutive 20-plus-point scoring game.
Was named all-tournament at Riverton after Hillsboro’s 42-30 win over Auburn in the fifth-place game.
Scored 26 in a 67-18 win over Heyworth.
Added 25 points in a 64-56 loss to PORTA.
12/30 girls basketball at Riverton: 5th Place Game - Hillsboro 42, Auburn 30 - Layne Rupert named to the all-tourney team pic.twitter.com/elSqemLJhB— Journal-News Sports (@JNsports) December 31, 2021
Led her team to a consolation championship at the State Farm Classic.
Totaled 22 points, 6 rebounds and 4 steals in a 58-42 win over Sacred Heart-Griffin.
Scored 17 in a 61-53 win over Rockford Lutheran.
Had 13 points in defeating El Paso-Gridley 61-35.
Led the Saints with 11 points in a 46-37 loss to Rock Falls.
Averaged 20.3 points, 5.3 rebounds, 4.7 steals and 2.7 assists at the Sandburg Holiday Tournament.
Congrats to Mia Kennelly in being named to the all-tournament team at the Sandburg Holiday Tournament. An extremely strong field with a ton of talented players, Mia was 1 of 11 selected. For the week she averaged 20.3pts, 5.3rebs, 4.7 steals, and 2.7 assists. We are proud of you! pic.twitter.com/hUYEZmc0hP— Oak Lawn HS Girls Basketball (@olchsgirlsbball) December 30, 2021
The Princeton signee is averaging 13.1 points, 11.9 rebounds, 3.2 blocks and 2 assists per game as the Rockets sit 8-6.
Averaged 12.5 points, 13.8 rebounds, 3.5 blocks and 2.5 assists over four games at the Montini Catholic Christmas Tournament.
Finish the @montinixmastrny with a win over St Francis 43-18. Great defense all week (35 ppg) and it continued today. @taylorrcharless had 13 pts, 11 rbs, 4 blks, 3 asts. @RylieDuval had 7 points. We finished a competitive first half schedule 8-6— Central Rockets (@CHS_rocketbball) December 30, 2021
Powers scored 15 in a 1-point loss to unbeaten Okawville and 34 points with 11 rebounds and 2 assists in a 63-52 win over Belleville West.
Mascoutah Christmas Tournament— Alton Womens Basketball (@AltonWbb) December 29, 2021
Alton beats Belleville West!
Final 63-52 (11-2) 🔥
PLAYER OF THE GAME🏆
Jarius Powers- 34 points/11 rebounds/ 2 assists/ 1 block pic.twitter.com/yqL05pjHgY
The Central Michigan signee scored 40 in a 76-64 win over Marquette.
She put up 24 points in a 62-34 victory against Civic Memorial.
Posted 21 points in a loss to Eureka.
Edwardsville girls take fifth at Viz with 76-64 win over Marquette. Sydney Harris with 40 points. pic.twitter.com/PrY5UgHiu1— Matthew Kamp (@kamper317) December 28, 2021