Lily Sutter can appear to be in multiple spots at once, and the do-it-all Dunlap junior was big in the first two overtimes against Metamora. Her performance gave the Eagles a chance in an eventual 64-59 road win Saturday afternoon.
Dunlap’s Sophia Remmel’s 21 points led all scorers while Sutter’s 19 seemed to come repeatedly at critical junctures in the triple-overtime victory.
“Lily is a key part to our success this season,” coach Heather Cassady said. “She has stepped out of her sister Elle’s shadow and (is) now making a name for herself. She is a very versatile player who can shoot the three and also create her own shot.”
Kayla Pacha led the way for the Redbirds (5-1) with 16 points. Grace Tyra had 15 points, all on 3-point makes for the Redbirds, and Alanya Terry chipped in 10. The Redbirds knocked down eight 3-pointers.
Remmel already had a 35-point performance in an impressive 57-39 victory over a solid Pekin squad. Pekin has since ended Morton’s 64-game Mid-Illini conference win streak.
“We are clicking right now,” Cassady said. “This team is working because we have good ball handlers, several shooters, and play great defense. Im very proud of the effort and focus so far but it’s still early
Remmel found Tanaya Cummimngs for a cutting bucket as Dunlap seemed to finally make the clinching bucket, only for Tyra to hit one of her many threes to pull Metamora within a point, 60-59.
But Remmel made up for some earlier missed free throws, making each of her four attempts from the line in the third OT to clinch the victory.
“Sophia had a tough few minutes but overall she had a great game,” Cassady said. “So far this season she is averaging 20.5 points per game.”
The teams traded buckets, with a Brooklyn Marshall basket putting Metamora up a point. Remmell tied it with a free throw, and though both teams had their chances to win, neither team could get a shot to go down as the score sat at 54-54 going to the third extra period.
Sutter hit each of Dunlap’s two shots from the floor in the first overtime, grabbed several critical rebounds and blocked Pacha with the Eagles leading by four with under 40 seconds remaining. Unfortunately for the Eagles, missed free throws haunted them, and a Katie Lalumandier three-pointer with just over seven seconds left send the game to a second OT with the score 50-50.
Julia Sollberger made several big buckets in the overtimes, scoring 6 of her 8 points after regulation.
Sutter knocked down a bucket in the lane in the opening minute of the fourth to give Dunlap its first lead since the second quarter, and Remmel followed with another basket to push Dunlap ahead 38-35.
Marshall and Pacha sank consecutive shots for the Redbirds as Metamora tied the game back up 41-all.
Sutter sank two free throws with 1:39 to push Dunlap ahead 43-41. After a defensive stop, the Eagles took a timeout with 1:11 to go.
Metamora stripped Remmel off the drive, and took a timeout of its own with 1:00 left. Alana Terry, fouled right out of the timeout, san two freebies to tie it 43-43.
Metamora then stripped Remmel again with just over 10 seconds remaining off a double-team as a leaping Katy Ramage produced the turnover.
Pacha, rummaging for a loose ball, was fouled in the chaos, sending her to the free throw line, where she missed the front end of a 1-and-1. After a timeout with 1.9 seconds left, the Redbirds defense kept Remmel from getting off a shot from around half-court to send the game into overtime.
A Remmel floater pulled Dunlap back within three points at 29-26, only for Tyra to sink a triple. Remmel responded in-turn with a left-corner trey to pull Dunlap’s deficit back to 32-29.
After several scoreless minutes, Bree Erickson’s corner 3-pointer capped a 13-3 run for Dunlap, who pulled within a point (33-32) as Metamora went into the fourth up 35-34.
Russell scored 8 points in the second quarter and Tyra hit multiple 3-pointers in the first half as Metamora took a 29-19 lead into the half.
Pacha demonstrated a soft touch with a nice left-handed shot in the lane and Izzy Vandeschraaf followed another defensive stop with two free throws to push Metamora ahead 16-11.
Bree Erickson scored 5 of Dunlap’s 8 points of the second quarter, as Metamora held the Eagles in-check most of the way, as she and Sutter each knocked down 3-pointer in the period.
The Redbirds’ hard-nosed defense kept the Eagles from getting clean looks off the bounce. After initially running extra bodies at Remmel off the bounce, the sophomore Dunlap guard picked up her first bucket with a runner in the lane as Dunlap trailed 9-6. A triple from Remmel was the difference as the Eagles took an 11-9 lead into the second.
*Several stats were changed and quotes from coach Heather Cassady were added after publishing.